Continuous Fermentation & Fed-Batch Fermentation

Continuous fermentation & fed-batch fermentation both allow open systems and require the addition of fresh medium during the strain culture in advancing high product yield. As a leading CDMO, BOC Sciences has the ability to offer continuous fermentation and/or batch fermentation services and to optimize the processes.

Based on our expertise in microbial fermentation and extensive supporting facilities, BOC Sciences provides one-stop fermentation services, including strain development, fermentation process optimization, GARS service, and more. We are committed to providing our customers with customized services, high-quality products, and expert consultation on microbial fermentation projects.


During continuous fermentation, the addition of substrates and harvest of final products occur continuously and simultaneously. This process utilizes cell immobilization technology, which makes it possible for the recovery and continuous utilization of cells. Continuous fermentation increases the risk of contamination of the entire system, and the concentration of final products obtained, which is usually low, can enhance downstream processing costs. The continuous fermentation process usually requires more complex equipment and process flow design. When these process difficulties are overcome, continuous fermentation can be applied to a broader range of industrial biotechnology products and have significant economic advantages.

Fed-batch fermentation is a semi-continuous process, supplying nutrients during cell culture to keep them from becoming limiting. Although the fed-batch fermentation process may increase processing time and may lead to inhibition of target products through the accumulation of toxic by-products, with a more thorough understanding and advanced accomplishment of fed-batch fermentation, it is widely used in the biotechnology industry. Fed-batch fermentation is extensively used for the production of and antibiotics due to the advantage of being able to achieve higher product yields overall by feeding during the culture process.

Advantages of Continuous Fermentation

  • Avoided repetitive fermentation preparation, cleaning, and sterilization between batches in the discontinuous process; required no additional manpower, effort, and time.
  • Extended the exponential microbial growth phase of the culture process compared to the batch process, thereby reducing processing time and ensuring a high production level of final products.
  • Eliminated inhibition of substrates or by-products as final products are harvested continuously.

Advantages of Fed-Batch Fermentationl

  • Control feed rate of media containing substrate and nutrients and regulate the concentration of key substances to control product formation rate.
  • Achieve high cell density and increase production of metabolites not related to growth.
  • Extend the production duration of cell culture and operate with different feeding strategies to achieve maximum productivity.

Applications of Continuous Fermentation

Continuous fermentation systems offer important economic advantages with improved fermentation rates, especially when continuous fermentation is combined with cell immobilization techniques. The continuous fermentation process can utilize mixed cultures to afford chemicals, and this technology holds great promise for the efficient production of fermented beverages such as beer, wine, cider, and bioethanol. Continuous fermentation is also used to produce certain bioproducts, including polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA), lactic acid (LA), butanol, citric acid, and 1, 3-propanediol.

Applications of Fed-Batch Fermentation

Fed-batch fermentation has been widely used because its main advantages include controlling microbial growth rates, bioactive metabolites, and oxygen transfer limitation by feeding rate. Fed-batch fermentation can be used to produce the highest microbial biomass weight that forms bioactive metabolites. Various products produced by fed-batch techniques include proteins, amino acids, enzymes, antibiotics, vitamins, alkaloids, phenols, or other biochemical compounds extracted from bacterial, actinomycetes, fungal, and algal cells.

What Can We Do?

Microbial strain culture can be manipulated in a variety of ways. One of the most effective ways is by varying the feeding method. BOC Sciences is able to select the most appropriate feeding strategy based on the nature of the target product or different production purposes. We have the ability to perform continuous fermentation or fed-batch fermentation and provide the most cost-effective customized fermentation service to our customers.

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