General Information: Microorganism used in cheese production. This microbe is a member of the lactic acid bacteria and produces lactic acid from sugars. It is found in many environments including plant and animal habitats. Lactococcus lactis is used as a starter culture for the production of cheese products (such as cheddar) and in milk fermentations and, as such, is one of the most important microbes in the food industry. The degradation of casein, acidification by lactic acid, and production of flavor compounds, processes that are caused by the bacteria, contribute to the final product.