Some authors defined fermented vegetables as the products of the future, for some reasons:
1. high level of safety
2. fermented vegetables can be considered “organic foods””
3. the formation, in some cases, of good metabolites, like l-lactic acid and different types of amino acids
4. low energetic input for the production
5. simple flow-sheet for the production
6. it is not necessary the storage under refrigeration.
On the European market it is possible to find different types of fermented vegetables products; the most important are table olives (Mediterranean Countries) and sauerkrauts (Northen Europe).
The most important microorganisms, involved in vegetable fermentation, are lactic acid bacteria (Lactobacillus plantarum, Lb. brevis, Leuconostoc mesenteroides, Pediococcus spp.), Gram negative bacteria (Enterobacter spp.) and yeasts (Candida spp.).
In 1991 Fleming pointed out some main phases for the fermentation of vegetables:
1. Initiation
2. Primary fermentation
3. Secondary fermentation
4. Post-fermentation.