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What is fermentation?

Do you know how many types of fermented foods are in the world?

It’s about 7,000. For instance, bread and wine are fermented food created by yeast. Vinegar is often used in the dressing, pickles, kimchi, cheese. Nata de coco is a film outcome of combining acetic acid bacteria with coconut juice. Which means we eat a film from bacteria.

Miso, sake, soy sauce, and natto are unique fermented food with wisdom and technique. The miso-making process as an example, koji, the fungus attached to soybeans, growing by consuming nutrition from the surface of the soybean.

During the process, Koji creates enzymes, and the enzymes change starch into sugar, and protein into amino acids. Koji grows its number steadily, which results in increasing the number of enzymes too.

Once the number of enzymes reached a certain level, Koji stops working. In other words, it stops life activity. Enzymes keep working on making sugar and amino acids even after Koji’s deactivation. Lactic acid bacteria and yeast fungus appear at this stage. Lactic acid bacteria and yeast fungus turn sugar into lactic acid and alcohol respectively. The consequence of those linked processes results in sweet, sourness, and slightly alcohol-scented tasty miso.

Fermentation VS Decomposition

Fermentation is the phenomenon that resulted in time through the activity of microbes. However, food also can be gone bad as time goes by. What are the differences between fermentation and decomposition?

Fermentation and decomposition are the results of the same activity in the perspective of microbes. Those terms decided by human depends on the result of microbe activity.

It is called ‘Fermentation’ if the results are beneficial to humans, and called ‘Decomposition’ if the results harm on mankind.

Microbes are just doing work as a life activity, but the phenomenon is varying. Fermentation is the fruit of the efforts and wisdom of humans to lead it most beneficial way.

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