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Lactic acid bacteria constitute a diverse group of industrially significant, safe microorganisms that are primarily used as starter cultures and probiotics, and are also being developed as production systems in industrial biotechnology. The aim of this paper is to provide a brief overview of the potential of lactic acid bacteria as biological catalysts for production of different organic compounds for food and non-food sectors based on their diversity, metabolic- and stress tolerance features, as well as the use of genetic/metabolic engineering tools for enhancing their capabilities.