Intelligent Bacteria is one of the research program in the Education Focus Program (EFP), which focuses on the collaboration between art and science. This program is the result of collaboration between HONF and a scientist community from the University of Gajah Mada (UGM) to explore the field of microbiology and biotechnology. Intelligence Bacteria have a main goal to bridge the practice, theories and innovative ideas from the fields of art and science to actualize it's application based on generic infrastructure and affordable technologies. This platform was built from a common vision to develop and integrate the two fields of disciplines to find new forms of innovation which refers to the needs of interdisciplinary actions for the wide society.
Based on the mass media in the past two months, numerous victims have died in vain due to unfortunate self-made alcohol drinks. Directly or not, this phenomenon occurred post the announcement of new regulation from the Ministry of Financial Department (PMK) No.62 of 2010 date 17/03 (Peraturan Menteri Keuangan (PMK) No.62 tahun 2010 tanggal 17/03) about the increasement in excise duty on alcohol. This regulation directly triggered expensive price in retail selling of alcohol drinks in the early of April 2010. Whereas the market segmentation of local traditional alcohol drinks is addressed to the diversified community low-middle economic community.
This phenomenon is mainly caused by the new regulation are causing the price of local produced alcohol drinks are unaffordable by the society. For example, the price of one bottle of Red Wine "Orang Tua" brand before the regulation was Rp. 15,000.00. After the new regulation, the price went up triple times as much as Rp. 45,000.00.
Self-made alcohol drinks in the market, in fact contain very dangerous substances. Research results from Forensic Laboratory of Kudus City Police Department in analyzing the self-made alcohol that caused the death of three people in Kudus last April, shows an amount of Methanol substance inside the drinks (Folnews.com). Based on the explanation from researchers at Microbiology Department of Gadjah Mada University (UGM) of Yogyakarta, Methanol substance inside the drinks are likely caused by unfavorable fermentation in the production. The type of alcohol produced from fermentation process that can be safely consumed in a certain amount is Ethanol. Unhygienic fermentation process can caused bacterial contamination causing Methanol to be produced as the alcohol product. If Methanol constantly consumed in certain amount of time, it can caused vision disorder to blindness, and even death.
The containment of Methanol produced from the producing of self-mad alcohol drinks by the society is mainly caused by the lack of knowledge from the society in the proper fermentation process. By these reason, HONF collaborate with researchers at Microbiology UGM Yogyakarta to conduct a research in introducing a proper and safe fermentation technology for the society. Hopefully, this technology can be used by the society in producing self-made alcohol that is safe for consumption.
Fermentation is a process of energy producing by microbes through the sugar molecules splitting in an anaerobic atmosphere. Anaerobic atmosphere is an atmospheric situation which Oxygen (O2) are not available in the area. In alcohol fermentation process, the microbes are commonly used is called Saccharomyces cerevisiae. In the process, Saccharomyces cerevisae will convert Sugar in to alcohol (Ethanol) and CO2. CO2 gas will be released in to the atmosphere, while alcohol (Ethanol) will remain in the container where the fermentation took place (Fermentor).
Normally, fermentation process lasts for 10 - 14 days, and the percentage of the alcohol (Ethanol) produced is less than 15%. This can be caused by many factors such as sugar content, room temperature, microbial properties, material density, water activities etc. Basically the main ingredient of the fermentation is the amount of sugar inside the fermentation materials. Thus, any material containing sugar can be used as a fermentation material.
Taste, flavor, and of course alcohol content (Ethanol) that is produced are dependable on the type of fermentation materials. In this research, HONF and UGM Microbiology Laboratory have tried several types of fruit as fermentation materials to evaluate the differences in taste, aroma, alcohol (Ethanol) grade that is generated and also production cost of the fermentation itself. Fruit that has been used as test subjects for fermentation materials are Pineapple, Chrysophyllum, Palm water, Salak, Mango and Soursop.
2. Fermentation Materials, Fruit
Fermentation materials that has been used in this research are:
3. Sugar (additive material): used in the research is white sugar
4. Yeasts: used in the research is Saccharomyces cerevisae from Microbiology Laboratory Faculty of Agriculture, Gadjah Mada University Yogyakarta
Wine yeasts can be straightly added into the fermenting bin, but it is better to start them off in some warm fruit juice (the juice from fruits is ideal) and then add it to the fermenting container once the yeast is bubbling. Yeast is found naturally in the bloom of grapes, so we can create our own yeast by crushing a few grapes into some warm natural fruit juice. Orange juice works well. Once this is bubbling, add it to fermenting bin.
STERILIZATION & SANITATION
UNCLEAN equipments and environments in wine making will cause bacterial contamination. Bacterial contamination caused acid production and/or METHANOL and other undesired compounds. METHANOL is DANGEROUS FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION. METHANOL CAN CAUSE BLINDNESS AND EVEN DEATH IF IT CONSUMED IN A HIGH AMOUNT AND/OR CONTINUOUSLY BY HUMAN. The maximum amount of 2% Methanol volume per volume (v/v) can be consumed by human in healthy condition.
Bacterial Contamination could caused by:
LACTIC ACID BACTERIA
METHANOL PRODUCING BACTERIA
Methanol is found naturally in the environment. Bacteria living in anaerobic surrounding produce methanol as a waste stream. Other bacteria also living in anaerobic conditions will use methanol as a food and produce methane. These bacteria are the same bacteria found in septic tanks and anaerobic digesters used by farmers and wastewater treatment plants. Several species of bacteria that capable contaminate fermentation process and produce methanol are:
There are several products that could be used for sanitation process in wine making:
This is the most easiest product that available in any chemical laboratory shop. It is handy, affordable and easy-to-use makes it a very useful in the fermentation process. Place Ethanol to a sprayer and it can be used for sanitizing hands, joints and other delicate surfaces.
Chlorine (household bleach)
Sanitation could also achieved by boiling the equipments for fermentation process. Don't boil plastic equipment as it may deform and become useless. Brew water also can be sanitized by boiling and it is mandatory (if it’s not filtered). Boiling brew water will get rid of the chlorine, but this process also get rid of oxygen. As Yeast need oxygen during the first 24 hours of fermentation, boiled water needs oxygen by vigorously stirring the air back to the water before use).
Don't ruin sanitizing process by drying off equipments with some dirty towel. Sanitize working area and let equipments air dry (or use it wet), rather than using unclean fabrics to dry it of. Keep cats, kids, canaries, canines, and other animal annoyances outside the working area. Always keep doors and windows shut to avoid airborne bugs, dusts and microscopic creature from the working space.
EXHIBITION / PRESENTATION / WORKSHOP