• Studio della maturazione di formaggi pecorino stagionati in stabilimento e in grotta
  • Caffarri, Elena <1979>


  • AGR/16 Microbiologia agraria


  • Aims: Ripening evaluation of two different Pecorino cheese varieties ripened according either to a traditional method in plant and in cave. Different ripening features have been analyzed in order to evaluate the cave as possible ripening environment with the aim of obtaining a peculiar product which could also establish an added value to the cultural heritage of the local place in which it has been originally manufactured. Methods and Results: Chemical-physical features of Pecorino cheese have been initially analyzed into two different ripening environments and experimentations, among which: pH, weight reduction and subsequent water activity. Furthermore, the microbial composition has been characterized in relationship with the two different ripening environments, undertaking a variety of microbial groups, such as: lactic bacteria, staphylococci, yeasts, lactococci, enterobacteria, enterococci. Besides, an additional analysis for the in-cave adaptability evaluation has been the identification of biogenic amines inside the Pecorino cheese (2-phenilethylamine, putrescine, cadaverine, hystidine, tyramine, spermine and spermidine). Further analysis were undertaken in order to track the lipid profile evolution, reporting the concentration of the cheese free fatty acids in object, in relation with ripening time, environment and production. In order to analyse the flavour compounds present in Pecorino cheese, the SPME-GC-MS technique has been widely employed. As a result, it is confirmed the trend showed by the short-chain free fatty acids, that is to say the fatty acids which are mostly involved in conveying a stronger flavor to the cheese. With the purpose of assessing the protheolytic patterns of the above-mentioned Pecorino cheese in the two different ripening environments and testing methods, the technique SDS-PAGE has been employed into the cheese insoluble fraction, whereas the SDS-PAGE technique has been carried out into the cheese soluble portion. Furthermore, different isolated belonging to various microbial groups have been genotypically characterized though the ITS-PCR technique with the aim to identify the membership species. With reference to lactic bacillus the characterized species are: Lactobacillus brevis, Lactobacillus curvatus and Lactobacillus paraplantarum. With reference to lactococci the predominant species is Lactococcus lactis, coming from the employed starter used in the cheese manufacturing. With reference to enterococcus, the predominant species are Enterococcus faecium and Enterococcus faecalis. Moreover, Streptococcus termophilus and Streptococcus macedonicus have been identified too. For staphylococci the identified species are Staphyilococcus equorum, Staphylococcus saprophyfiticus and Staphylococcus xylosus. Finally, a sensorial analysis has been undertaken through on one side a consumer test made by inexperienced consumers, and on the other side through a panel test achieved by expert consumers. From such test Pecorino cheese ripened in cave were found to be more pleasant in comparison with Pecorino cheese ripened in plant. Conclusions: The proposed approach and the undertaken analysis showed the cave as preferential ripening environment for Pecorino cheese and for the development of a more palatable product and safer for consumers’ health.


  • 2009-05-18


  • Doctoral Thesis
  • PeerReviewed


  • application/pdf



Caffarri, Elena (2009) Studio della maturazione di formaggi pecorino stagionati in stabilimento e in grotta, [Dissertation thesis], Alma Mater Studiorum UniversitĂ  di Bologna. Dottorato di ricerca in Biotecnologie degli alimenti , 21 Ciclo. DOI 10.6092/unibo/amsdottorato/1759.