PEF transforms yeast processing, enhancing productivity, improving product quality, extending shelf life, reducing costs and increasing yields

PEF is suitable for versatile food, beverage and biotechnological applications. Microbial cells can be affected in different ways to stimulate growth and facilitate the extraction of valuable compounds, such as lipids, proteins and other functional biomacromolecules. Fermentation processes are accelerated, yield and capacity increase, and quality improves. PEF also provides a low-temperature solution for inactivating harmful microorganisms and extending shelf life.

Enhanced productivity

Traditional fermentation time can be reduced, resulting in faster production cycles and higher output.

Increase yield

PEF optimises yeast extraction, resulting in increased yields.

Microbial control

PEF low-temperature process can inactivate microorganisms without affecting bioactive compounds.


Extract of valuable compounds from waste yeast (brewers and bakers yeast).

Energy efficiency

Faster production saves energy and less resources are required.

Elea Pulsed Electric Field systems process at low temperatures with minimum energy usage, optimising up and downstream processes during fermentation.

Find the right Elea PEF Advantage system for your yeast production line

We have installed more than 250 Elea PEF systems globally, working for some of the world’s leading food producers. Every Elea PEF Advantage system shares the same 24/7 production capability and is built to operate under extreme conditions.
PEF improves fermentation in yeast and other microorganisms by applying precisely controlled electrical pulses to stimulate microorganisms and/or to open the cell structure to facilitate the release of intracellular compounds.

Opening yeast cells with Elea PEF Advantage

PEF enables the extraction of more valuable compounds: essential amino acids, minerals, proteins and essential oils.

PEF treatment optimises the cell disintegration of yeast cells as part of the downstream processing during a fermentation process. By applying precisely controlled electrical pulses, PEF gently opens yeast cells, releasing their intracellular content. As a simple physical process, the activity of the intracellular content is not affected, and the extraction yield is increased. It is possible to combine it with other disintegration techniques to create a superior product while shortening processing times and reduction of chemical uses.
Food Industry
(e.g. flavour enhancer)
Cosmetic & health sector
(e.g. antioxidants)
(e.g. media supplement)

Better extraction with PEF

Methylene blue enters disintegrated cells. After PEF, yeast appears blue (right picture), indicating a complete disintegration. The cell structure is intact, allowing improved and selective extraction with higher purity.

Improved protein extraction

By applying PEF, proteins and other compounds can be extracted out of the yeast cells. No additives or chemicals are needed.

Separation after PEF

After the PEF treatment, more intracellular content (serum) is released. A significant increase of about 20 % was detected.

The figures here are for example purposes only and are dependent on the raw material

Elea PEF Advantage benefits for yeast and bacterial stimulation

PEF treatment is also beneficial for stimulating yeast cells and other microorganisms. Targeted electrical pulses affect the growth of cells and thus speed up the fermentation process. As such, the concentration of intracellular compounds can be affected, and the characteristics of final products are improved.

Yoghurt fermentation


Medical & pharmaceutical

PEF effect noticeable after freezing for the preservation of cultures

Yoghurt starter cultures were frozen after PEF treatment. In both cases (without and with freezing) the pH in the milk is changing faster after PEF treatment.

New product characteristics

Treating the starter cultures for yoghurt production allows a higher quality. The yoghurt containing PEF-treated starter cultures is firmer due to the increased production of exopolysaccharides due to the higher metabolic activity caused by PEF.

Applications of PEF on yoghurt starter cultures

Stimulation of S .thermophilus, L. delbruecki subsp. bulgaricus.

The figures here are for example purposes only and are dependent on the raw material

Elea PEF Advantage inactivation

By subjecting yeast to PEF treatment, the spoilage-causing microorganisms can be efficiently controlled. PEF disrupts the cell membranes of undesirable microbes, inhibiting their growth and extending the shelf life of yeast-based products. This benefit is particularly valuable for bakeries, breweries, and other food industries where product freshness and longevity are crucial.

Waste stream valorisation

Food ingredients

Medical application

Better control of yeast concentration

PEF provides greater control of yeast concentration in different products.
The graph shows the reduction of yeast cells in a yeast slurry.

The figures here are for example purposes only and are dependent on the raw material

FYI further reading about PEF treatment for yeast

Pulsed Electric Field-assisted extraction of valuable compounds from microorganisms.

Martínez, Juan M, Carlota Delso, Ignacio Álvarez, and Javier Raso. 2020. Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety 19(2): 530–52.

Sequential extraction of compounds of interest from yeast biomass assisted by Pulsed Electric Fields

Berzosa, Alejandro et al. 2023. Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology 11.

Extraction of proteins and other intracellular bioactive compounds from baker’s yeasts by Pulsed Electric Field treatment

Ganeva, Valentina et al. 2020.  Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology 8: 552335.

Effect of Pulsed Electric Fields on the production of yeast extract by autolysis

Dimopoulos, Georgios, Nefeli Stefanou, Varvara Andreou, and Petros Taoukis. 2018.  Innovative Food Science & Emerging Technologies 48: 287–95.

Optimisation of extraction parameters for protein from beer waste brewing yeast treated by Pulsed Electric Fields (PEF)

Liu, Mingyuan et al. 2012. African Journal of Microbiology Research 6(22): 4739–46

Elea application support for yeast processing

From your initial brief to final installation, we quickly get your new PEF system working perfectly for your product.
Each and every PEF solution we provide for our clients is tailored to their specific requirements.  

We can trial your product at our specialist PEF piloting facility at our headquarters in Quakenbrück, Germany, or we can run trials on location at your production line.

Once trials are finished you can be sure that you getting the most optimal PEF treatment for your product.

Our scientists and engineers work with our clients every step of the way offering expert guidance and professional advice for your chip product. We take your product concept and apply our industry-leading knowledge and experience to designing a system that will deliver greatest value.

Technical care and support

We offer a range of service options including remote monitoring and 24 hours support.

Installation and commissioning

Our specialist installation teams work closely with our customers to ensure a smooth, swift and successful commissioning of our systems into your production line.

24 / 7 / 365 Support

As part of our service contract we supply each customer with round the clock technical support. With our team of support engineers, options for remote maintenance and on-site spare parts, we keep you up, running and efficient.

Remote monitoring

Optionally the ELEA PEF-systems can be connected for remote diagnostic and support by our Customer Service Department. For this option, ELEA can offer a specific package.

With our team of support engineers, options for remote maintenance and on-site spare parts, we keep you up, running and efficient.

Meet the Elea yeast team

Claudia Siemer
R&D Manager
Jimmy Kinsella
Engineering Manager
Johannes Pfeiffer
Sales Manager
The Elea yeast team includes process engineers, food and biotechnologists, mechanical and electrical engineers and more – all of whom specialise in Pulsed Electric Field.