Fermentation is an incomplete oxidation process that does not require oxygen and the result is an organic compound. Depending on these final products, there are different types of fermentation.
What is fermentation?
It is a catabolic process of incomplete oxidation that does not require the presence of oxygen and gives rise to an organic compound.
It was discovered by Louis Pasteur, who described it as “Life without air” . Fermentation is usually carried out by yeasts, although it is also carried out by some metazoans and protists.
This process is anaerobic, the final acceptor of the electrons from the NADH produced during glycolysis is not oxygen, but an organic compound that will be reduced to re-oxidize NADH into NAD+. The organic compound that is reduced is a derivative of the substrate that has been previously oxidized.
Types of fermentation
There are different types of fermentation:
1. Acetic fermentation
It is a process carried out by bacteria that modify ethyl alcohol and result in acetic acid. This acid is found in substances such as wine and vinegar and has a characteristic odor. The bacteria that carry out this process are known as Acetobacter. Unlike other fermentations, this one requires large volumes of oxygen.
It should be noted that, unlike other fermentations, this one requires a large volume of oxygen.
2. Alcoholic fermentation
This process is achieved thanks to the lack of oxygen. Microorganisms transform substances that contain carbohydrates, obtaining substances such as alcohol, ethanol, carbon dioxide, among others. There are various bacteria that carry out this process.
3. Butyric fermentation
Also called Pasteur fermentation, it is a type of fermentation produced by the total lack of oxygen. Transforms carbohydrates into butyric acid. This process is characterized by a putrid and foul odor.
4. Lactic fermentation
This type of fermentation occurs in the presence of fungi and bacteria that transform glucose in order to obtain energy. As a result of this process, a waste called lactic acid is produced, which provides a characteristic bitter taste.
These acids are found in yogurt, legumes and cabbage. The bacteria and fungi that we consume daily.
5. Butanediolic fermentation
It is considered a variant of lactic fermentation. It is produced by enterobacteria that release carbon dioxide and butanediol.
6. Propionic fermentation
In this process the main substances involved are propionic acid, acetic acid, carbon dioxide and succinic acid. Bacteria transform these substances into propionic acid. It is used to make foods such as cheese.
Applications In Daily life
Fermentation produces primary industrial benefits such as converting wort into wine, barley into beer, and carbohydrates into carbon dioxide to make bread. It is also used to make supplements such as cyanocobalamin.
Fermentation has made it possible to enrich the diet by incorporating different flavors, textures and aromas into foods. It also allows you to enrich foods with proteins, amino acids, essential fatty acids and vitamins.
Fermentation preserves large quantities of food through lactic acid, acetic acid, ethanol and alkaline fermentations.
Reduces cooking times and detoxifies food. It can eliminate anti-nutrients.