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Improving lives by solving problems in agriculture and the environment...

CABI's Microbial Services


CABI is a leading provider of microbial services. We specialise in microbial identification and verification, and provide professional microbiology services in support of industry, academia and agriculture. 

Our team of scientists is headed up by Professor Paul Bridge and includes mycologists, molecular biologists, bacteriologists, ecologists, systematists and biochemists. All our experts have many years of experience and are trained to the highest level.

Latest news

CABI achieves unique UKAS accreditation for molecular identification of bacteria

CABI is pleased to announce that its Microbial Services division has achieved UKAS accreditation to ISO 17025 for the molecular identification of bacteria. The accreditation covers identification of bacteria isolates to species level by partial 16S rRNA gene sequencing. This service is unique in the UK, as it's the only service to be accredited by UKAS for the entire identification process including providing the name of the organism.

CABI already holds UKAS accreditation for a wide range of microbial testing. UKAS accreditation provides an assurance of competence, impartiality and integrity. Customers not only benefit from a high quality service operating to internationally recognized standards but also receive reports bearing the UKAS symbol of quality, bringing national and international recognition to their business. Click here for the full range of UKAS accredited services offered by CABI.


UKAS Testing


New screening tool from CABI and Enzagen

CABI’s Microbial Services team is undertaking a new initiative with Enzagen, to provide simple ready to use microbial 'panels' as screening kits. Streptomet, the first kit, is aimed at metabolite screening such as hydroxylation and glucuronidation reactions. The kit comprises freeze-dried biomass from 20 different Streptomyces cultures. Further details, including ordering and prices are available through Enzagen, at


CABI's Microbial Identification Service provides an international, high quality, confidential service for the identification of filamentous fungi, yeasts and bacteria. We serve clients from a range of industries including the pharmaceutical, food and manufacturing sectors, as well as research organisations working in agriculture, horticulture, quarantine, biodiversity assessment and biological control.


We manage a collection of over 28,000 living strains including the UK National Collection of Fungus Cultures. The culture collection contains over 6,000 species isolated from environmental and agricultural systems worldwide, making it one of the most significant in the world.  

Our range of organisms consists of filamentous fungi and yeasts, plant pathogenic bacteria, including extremophiles, metabolite producing strains, biological control agents and many more.  

Find out more about our 
culture collection or browse our online catalogue.

Scientist holding testtube

We provide a broad range of microbial investigation, testing and consultancy services, both off-site and at our UKAS accredited facilities.

Our experts can:

  • investigate fungal contamination problems in both the home and workplace, and advises how to minimise risk conduct on-site mould contamination testing, and air testing for fungal spores

  • carry out mould growth testing to internationally recognised standards

  • test and monitor fuel for microbial contamination, as overseen by our dedicated team at Conidia Bioscience.

Scientific research in lab

We provide training in molecular identification of microorganisms, morphological identification of fungi, microbial techniques, isolation methods for fungi and bacteria, and preservation of microorganisms. Over the last 25 years our scientists have trained over 5,000 people and run 75 courses in 13 countries, enabling participants to identify, maintain and utilise microorganisms in their business and research.

Find out more about our microbial training.

Member countries in bands 1-4 (ie with a UN Index Number between 0 - 0.999) are entitled to free identifications of microbial samples. The free service provides specifically for identification of bacteria and fungi of ogricultural/ horticultural importance or origin, relating to food security or plant health, including quarantine organisms.

More information on country eligibility and how to access services and submit samples is available to Member Countries.

Within each qualifying Member Country, the free service is available to: National and Regional Agricultural Research Centres Government Institutions responsible for agriculture and food security University Departments whose studies relate to agricultural research.

A limited number of identifications can be provided under the scheme:
• A maximum of five samples per institution may be submitted at any one time
• A maximum of ten samples per institution may be submitted in any one year

Currently, our Member Countries eligible for the free service are as follows: Anguilla / Bahamas / Bangladesh / Bermuda / Botswana / British Virgin Islands / Brunei / Burundi / Chile / Colombia / Cote D’Ivoire / Cyprus / DPR Korea / Gambia / Ghana / Grenada / Guyana / India / Jamaica / Kenya / Malawi / Malaysia / Mauritius / Montserrat / Myanmar / Nigeria / Pakistan / Papua New Guinea / Philippines / Rwanda / Sierra Leone / Solomon Islands / South Africa / Sri Lanka / St Helena / Tanzania / Trinidad / Uganda / Vietnam / Zambia / Zimbabwe.

MIRRI – improving access to microbial resources, services and data

MIRRI – improving access to microbial resources, services and data

The Microbial Resource Research Infrastructure (MIRRI) is part of the European Strategy Forum for Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) roadmap, and is supported by the European Union (EU). It brings together 16 public Microbial Resource Centres and microbial research organizations as partners, who are supported by 17 European and several non-European... >>