A team of researchers has discovered that brewing kombu using seaweed, a non-nutritive source of nutrients and water, may be a viable alternative to brewing beer.
The team, led by Dr. Daniel L. Miller, professor of agricultural chemistry at Michigan State University, has been brewing kombus for the past year at their lab at the Center for Food Innovation and Innovation in Jackson, Mississippi.
The research was published in the journal Food Science & Technology.
Kombucha, also known as green tea, is made from the bacteria Saccharomyces cerevisiae.
It’s considered a natural remedy for many diseases, including diarrhea, constipation, and rheumatoid arthritis.
The seaweed that the researchers used was commonly used in traditional medicine, but was largely unknown outside of South Africa.
In fact, kombus are also used in Chinese traditional medicine to treat skin conditions and coughs, according to Miller.
Miller said the research team decided to start using seaweeds after realizing that many people have a strong dislike for using seawaves in brewing beer, especially for their kombuchas.
He said the researchers tried many ways to find a suitable seaweed source, including using seawater in water purification machines, using seawaters from the sea, and the seaweed in kombuzas that are already made with seaweed.
While the team did not find a seaweed specifically that would make the kombuca taste good, they did discover that they could ferment the seaweeds to create the kombos that people love.
“Our results show that seaweed could be used as a useful source for brewing beer in South Africa,” said Miller.
“If seaweed is used as the fermenting medium, it would be a potential source for making kombujas.
A yeast strain that is a good source of fermentation would be ideal.”
For now, the researchers are working on a new method for fermenting seaweed to produce a more pure fermentation medium.
“We are still learning the exact way to do this,” said Linton.
“But we are pretty excited to be able to brew beer using seawee.”
The researchers are also interested in the possibility of using seawood to make the beverage that the team loves the most: kombuda.