The main objectives are as follows:
* To upgrade the quality of dairy research in Africa by promoting co-operative research and networking among African scientist and dairy technologists.
* To phenotypically and genotypically characterize the microflora desired for the production of traditional sour milk and yoghurt and to explore their probiotic properties.
* To identify and characterize the dominant lactic acid bacteria responsible for the fermentation of traditional sour milk and yoghurt and determine their suitability for use as starter culture.
* To upgrade traditional dairy fermentation technology to semi-industrial scale production using selected cultures as well as improved processing layout and equipment design to ensure product safety, quality and stability.
* Generation of information on microbiological, biochemical and nutritional and probiotic aspects of traditional fermented dairy products could lead to the selection and tailoring of microorganisms which could be used as starter cultures for the controlled fermentation of fresh milk in order to improve the quality, safety and shelf life of dairy products.
* The application of GMP practices to traditional fermented dairy products will lead to a reduction in risks of foodborne intoxications and infections that can be encountered in dairy products.
* Local technological capacities will be strengthened by the establishment of a network for scientific co-operation among African food scientists.
The key activities envisaged are:
* Comprehensive national reviews of research on dairy products including literature reviews and evaluation of previous scientific works. Publication of a regional review report and an annotated bibliography on fermented traditional dairy products.
* Characterization of dominant microflora including their taxonomic and technological properties and microbiological interactions.
* Fermentation trials with selected cultures and product development.
* Demonstration of Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) at selected local production sites and upgrading of laboratory facilities.
* Training of research scientists in advanced techniques of food microbiology including both classical and molecular methods.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
30 Addis Ababa