Spoilage and defects

In Indonesia, where tempeh is consumed on a near-daily basis, spoilage is not much of an issue, provided the product is eaten within a day or two of manufacture. However, the shelf-life of tempeh held at room temperature is very short, owing to the continued growth of the mold and bacteria. Once R. oligosporus begins to sporulate and produce colored sporangia, the product's shelf-life is essentially finished. Even when stored at refrigeration temperatures, mold growth is slowed but not stopped. Therefore, some form of preservation is necessary. In the United States, tempeh is most often vacuum packaged in oxygen impermeable plastic to restrict growth of aerobic fungi and bac-teria.Another effective way to preserve tempeh is freezing, which halts fungal growth. Finally, tempeh can be dehydrated or cooked prior to packaging or made into various processed products, such as vegetarian meat-like foods.

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