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Fermentation Industry Research Paper

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Fermentation is derived from the Latin word “fervere” meaning “to be boiling”
Fermentation may be defined as a metabolic process in which chemical changes are brought about in an
organic substrate through the activities of enzymes secreted by microorganisms. Substrate is the material
or substance on which an enzyme acts (e.g. carbohydrates)
It is the chemical breakdown of a substance by bacteria, yeasts, or other microorganisms.
Ancient Times
Fermentation is one of the oldest forms of food processing known today.
Most authors point to the Neolithic Period (ca. 10,000 4,000 BCE) as the most probable time for the
intentional production of fermented drinks.
It was during this period that early humans transitioned from being hunter gatherers to living in
permanent settlements, such as those established in the eastern coast of the Mediterranean. This area is
referred to as the Fertile Crescent.
As a result of both stable living conditions and secure food supply, a Neolithic “cuisine” emerged and a
variety of food processing soon developed, including fermentation, soaking, heating and spicing.
Earliest types of fermented foods include leavened bread, beer, wine via yeast and cheese via bacteria
and molds. These were soon followed by East Asian fermented foods.
Modern Times
Vinegar from fruit pulp (remains of grapes, olives, or other fruit after pressing for juice or oil); Gallic acid
Yeast induced fermentation
In 1840, Theodore Schwann concluded that fermentation is a result of processes that occur in living
In 1854, the French Chemist Louis Pasteur determined that fermentation is caused by yeast. He
discovered that heating fermented wine would kill the microbes that caused it to spoil. He determined
the exact time and temperature that would kill the harmful microorganisms in the wine without changing
its taste.
Pasteurization is the process of heating a liquid to below the boiling point to destroy microorganisms. It
was developed in 1864.

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