Thirty-five years ago, three scientists in Oregon set out to create a fermented ingredient to protect against microbial spoilage and extend the shelf-life of food products. What resulted from their efforts was a product called MicroGARD®, a fermentate that eventually yielded a family of related food protection ingredients to meet increasing customer demands.

This year, the MicroGARD® fermented product range celebrates 35 years in DuPont Nutrition & Health’s expansive portfolio of ingredients. Developed decades before the “clean label” movement gained popularity, MicroGARD® offers food manufacturers a label-friendly, easy-to-recognize ingredient with the opportunity to shorten product label ingredient statements.

“The phrase ‘clean label’ was unknown to consumers when we launched MicroGARD®, which shows how early we saw the beauty in fermentation based ingredients,” says George Weber, PhD, senior principal scientist with DuPont Nutrition & Health, a co-inventor of MicroGARD®. “Now that consumers appreciate the health and nutritional benefits of fermented products, we are pleased that we can continue to celebrate and add to the legacy of this ingredient.”

For nearly three years, Weber worked alongside two scientists from Oregon State University to develop MicroGARD® 100: James Ayres, PhD, now retired professor of pharmacy; and William Sandine, PhD, retired professor of microbiology. Initially, the ingredient was developed to prevent mold growth in commercially packaged yogurt.

Other uses for MicroGARD® were discovered, such as its ability to extend shelf life in cottage cheese. A non-dairy dextrose version of the ingredient called MicroGARD® 200 was adapted to fight mold in salad dressing and officially became the first offspring in the MicroGARD® family of ingredients. MicroGARD® products provided an innovative and effective way to replace synthetic preservatives with fermented ingredients.

More than three decades later, the MicroGARD® family of ingredients continues to provide innovative solutions to meet the challenges of today, including the latest application: MicroGARD® 210 for high-protein nutrition bars. 

“Over the years, our account representatives became exceptionally well versed at suggesting new applications for fermentates to help customers overcome challenges with their products,” Weber says.

MicroGARD® products provide solutions for a wide application range including culinary, dairy, meat and poultry, bakery, confectionary and bars. Identity preserved (IP) and organic products also are available.

Today, the MicroGARD® family offers food manufacturers the ability to improve profitability by maintaining product quality and reducing premature spoilage. The fermentates also contribute to emulsification and positive flavor and color attributes, enabling food manufacturers the opportunity to formulate with fewer ingredients. DuPont offers scientific expertise and technical support for success.

“In working with this product for such a long time, we’ve been able to identify a number of functional properties for it that have contributed to its longevity and made it appealing to overseas markets,” adds John Wyatt, regional product manager, DuPont Nutrition & Health.

As a food protection ingredient, MicroGARD® adds to DuPont’s robust portfolio of ingredients that support the United Nation’s global initiative on food loss and waste reduction.

For more information about MicroGARD® fermentates or to view the complete product range, visit the DuPont Nutrition & Health website at

About DuPont Danisco

DuPont™ Danisco® is the brand for a range of ingredients that help provide enhanced bioprotection, an improved nutritional profile, and better taste and texture with greater cost efficiency and lower environmental impact, meeting the needs of manufacturers of food and beverages, dietary supplements and pet food. Through the work of the global network of food scientists and technologists in DuPont, the Danisco® range is supported by a uniquely broad spectrum of know-how across applications and processing.

 About DuPont Nutrition & Health

DuPont Nutrition & Health, a business unit of DowDuPont Specialty Products Division, combines in-depth knowledge of food and nutrition with current research and expert science to deliver unmatched value to the food, beverage, pharmaceutical and dietary supplement industries. We are innovative solvers, drawing on deep consumer insights and a broad product portfolio to help our customers turn challenges into high-value business opportunities. More information is available at

About DowDuPont Specialty Products Division

DowDuPont Specialty Products, a division of DowDuPont (NYSE: DWDP), is a global innovation leader with technology-based materials, ingredients and solutions that help transform industries and everyday life. Our employees apply diverse science and expertise to help customers advance their best ideas and deliver essential innovations in key markets including electronics, transportation, building and construction, health and wellness, food and worker safety. DowDuPont intends to separate the Specialty Products Division into an independent, publicly traded company. More information can be found