Soy sauce is a traditional Japanese fermented seasoning that contains various constituents such as amino acids, organic acids, and volatiles that are produced during the long fermentation process. Although studies regarding the correlation between microbes and aroma constituents have been performed, there are no reports about the influences of the microbial products, such as lactic acid, acetic acid, and ethanol, during fermentation. Because it is known that these compounds contribute to microbial growth and to changes in the constituent profile by altering the moromi environment, understanding the influence of these compounds is important. Metabolomics, the comprehensive study of low molecular weight metabolites, is a promising strategy for the deep understanding of constituent contributions to food characteristics. Therefore, the influences of microbes and their products such as lactic acid, acetic acid, and ethanol on aroma profiles were investigated using gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS)-based metabolic profiling. The presence of aroma constituents influenced by microbes and chemically influenced by lactic acid, acetic acid, and ethanol were proposed. Most of the aroma constituents were not produced by adding ethanol alone, confirming the participation of yeast in aroma production. It was suggested that lactic acid bacterium relates to a key aromatic compound, 2,5-dimethyl-4-hydroxy-3(2H)-furanone. However, most of the measured aroma constituents changed similarly in both samples with lactic acid bacterium and acids. Thus, it was clear that the effect of lactic acid and acetic acid on the aroma profile was significant.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology