Fermentation, an introduction with examples

Fermentation denotes a process employed to produce beer, wine, yogurt and several other

products. Fermentation represents a metabolic process such that an organism converts starch, a

carbohydrate, into sugar, into an acid or alcohol. For instance, yeast performs fermentation to

acquire energy and this is done by converting sugar into alcohol. The bacteria performing

fermentation, converts carbohydrates into lactic acid.

Fermentation History

 A natural process is fermentation. This is the reason people apply it to make various

products such as wine, cheese and beer even prior to the biochemical process came to be


 Louis Pasteur in the 1850s and 60s was the first scientist to learn about fermentation and

he demonstrated that this happened due to the presence of living cells.

Examples that are formed by fermentation

Most people employ the fermentation process for food and beverages, but do not realize many

important industrial products are also produced due to fermentation. For instance, beer, yogurt,

wine, cheese and some sour foods also contain lactic acid such as pepperoni, kimchi and

sauerkraut, bread levaning due to yeast, hydrogen gas, sewage treatment, industrial production of

alcohol such as biofuels and ethanol fermentation.

Yeast and some bacteria perform ethanol fermentation such that the pyruvate obtained from

glucose metabolism gets broken into carbon dioxide and ethanol. Ethanol fermentation is a

typical process that is used in the wine, beer and bread production. Fermentation owing to the

high levels pectin presence results in the methanol small amounts production and this is actually

toxic if consumed.

Lactic Acid Fermentation

The molecules pyruvate obtained from the glucose metabolism undergoes the fermentation and

turns into lactic acid. While the lactic acid fermentation converts lactose in yogurt production

into lactic acid. Thus, it exists in animal muscles and is put to use, if there is a need of energy for

the tissues at a faster rate than the supply of oxygen.

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