SUSTAINABLE PRODUCTION OF TRADITIONAL CHEESES FROM LOCAL SHEEP MILK, IN THE BALKANS: 1. IMPROVED REPRODUCTIVE MANAGEMENT OF INDIGENOUS-SHEEP-BREEDS POPULATIONS, 2. ENSURING OF TRADITIONAL CHEESES HYGIENE AND QUALITY

Acronym: INDI_SHEEP TRADI_CHEESE
Project ID: ERA 83
Funding including national funding and EC funding:
Total costs: 149,840 € SEE-ERA.NET PLUS funding: 130,982 €
Project duration: 01.10.2010 / 30.09.2012

Summary:
Cheese production represents each geographical area, a fact well recognized via established special labels of origin. Consumers recognize traditional cheeses for their unique quality characteristics, while they ask for certification of their hygiene. The objective of this proposal is to support the local producers in making safe and certified traditional cheeses from indigenous-sheep-breeds milk; this can be achieved through: ENSURING THE SUPPLY OF MILK FROM INDIGENOUS SHEEP APPROACH I: rapid improvement of productivity of the indigenous-sheep-breed population by application of A.I. and MOET programs, in order to encourage breeders to use exclusively sheep of the local breed. Initially, suitable protocols for the induction of superovulation in local sheep should be established and freezabilty of ram semen and embryos should be investigated in the view of formation of a germ cell bank. APPROACH II: Determination of the breed’s reproductive profile. Application of natural/alternative methods for the control of estrus and increase of fecundity (ram-effect/light manipulation/flushing), suitable for extensive and semi-extensive, environmentally viable sheep breeding, in the view of the increasing demand for organic products in the EU market. ENSURING THE HYGIENE AND UNDERSCORING THE QUALITATIVE SUPERIORITY OF TRADITIONAL CHEESES I. EVALUATION OF MILK QUALITY: microbiological examination and chemical analysis of milk II. EVALUATION OF CHEESE QUALITY: a) microbiological examination of cheese: effect of milk pasteurization on microbial evolution, composition of NSLAB during ripening, evolution of pathogens b) biochemical analysis of cheese: chemical and biochemical characteristics during ripening and c) organoleptic evaluation of cheese. DEVELOPMENT OF A DATABASE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM Populations, threats, description of the different production systems (emphasis on health, housing, feeding, appropriate behavior), for the indigenous breed under study.

Website:
http://www.indisheep-tradicheese.gr/

Partners involved:

National Agricultural Research Foundation
Veterinary Research Institute Thermi, Nagref Campus
PO BOX 60272
57001 Thermi - Thessaloniki, Greece
Dr. Foteini Samartzi samartzi@vri.gr
FACUL VETERINARY MEDICINE, UNIV CYRIL & METHODIUS
INSTITUTE OF REPRODUCTION AND BIOMEDICINE
Lazar Pop Trajkov 5-7
1000 Skopje, FYR of Macedonia
Prof. TONI DOVENSKI dovenski@fvm.ukim.edu.mk
FAC VET MED, SCHOOL HEALTH SCI, UNIV. OF THESSALY
DEPARTMENT OF PHYSIOLOGY
TRIKALON 224
43100 KARDITSA, Greece
Dr. EKATERINI THEODOSIADOU etheodosiadou@vet.uth.gr
FACULTY OF VETERINARY MEDICINE, UNIVERS. OF ZAGREB
CLINIC OF OBSTETRICS AND REPRODUCTION , DEPARTMENT OF HYGIENE AND TECHNOLOGY OF FOODSTUFFS OF ANIMAL ORIGIN
HEINZELOVA 55
10000 Zagreb, Croatia
Prof. JURAJ GRIZELJ jgrizelj@yahoo.com
FACULTY OF VETERINARY MEDICINE, UNIV. OF BELGRADE
Department of physiology and biochemistry, Department of food hygiene and technology
BULEVAR OSLOBODJENJA 18
11000 Belgrade, Serbia
Prof. MIODRAG LAZAREVIC misha@vet.bg.ac.rs