The shelf life of bread can be increased by up to four days, with the addition of certain strains of lactic acid bacteria, according to a recent study.

The research was carried out at the University of Valencia, in the Laboratory of Food Chemistry and Toxicology department, and was published in a journal called Food Control.

The study found that some strains of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) can stop fungal growth and reduce the presence of toxins in bread. In the study, 16 strains of LAB were cultivated and their antifungal activity against A. parasiticus and P. expansum tested.

Two strains of bacteria - L. bulgaricus and L. plantarum – showed an improvement in shelf life.