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Calculator for determining the concentration of undissociated lactic acid in cheese and whether the cheese will support the growth of Listeria monocytogenes.

To use add your values to the empty fields below


% Lactic acid in the cheese, w/w
pH of cheese
Cheese moisture, % w/w

This calculator uses a value of 3.71 for the pKa of lactic acid. This value was determined by Wemmenhove et al. (2017) for Gouda cheese. This is significantly lower than the previously published value for the pKa of this acid. This lower value reflects the ionic and lipid environment in cheese. For context, including references, a breakdown of the steps involved in this calculation, read the article "Functions of starters in dairy fermentations and the relative importance and effectiveness of their antimicrobial mechanisms".

How to cite this calculator

Mullan, W.M.A. (2017) [On-line] Available from: Accessed: