A simplified identification key described by Deak and Beuchat (T. Deak and L. R. Beuchat, J. Food Prot. 50:243-264, 1987) and the computer method of Barnett et al. (J. A. Barnett, R. W. Payne, and D. Yarrow, Yeast Identification Program, 1985) were used to identify 12 reference strains and 382 yeasts isolated from cultured milk products. Because the simplified key failed to account for species variability with regard to physiological, morphological, and sexual reproduction characteristics, poor agreement of the identification results was obtained. A reevaluation of the basic theoretical assumptions of the simplified key only confirmed the practical results and indicates that this identification method is unsatisfactor
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