Kombucha tea is a popular fermented drink that has been consumed for centuries due to its potential health benefits. However, the growth of mold in kombucha tea can be a significant problem for home brewers, leading to potential health hazards and spoilage of the entire batch. In this blog, we will explore the considerable causes of mold in kombucha tea and what you can do to prevent it.
What is Mold in Kombucha Tea?
Kombucha mold is a fungus that usually grows in damp and warm environments. However, it often also expands on the top surface of Kombucha tea. The reasons might differ, but the main thing is that it could be better to intake Kombucha tea with mold. It appears as spots or patches and can have different colors, such as green, white, or black.
Mold can occur in Kombucha tea when the brewing environment is not clean, the equipment used is not sterilized correctly, or prolonged exposure to air and light. In any case, it should be avoided as mold can cause health risks. Additionally, if it is present in your Kombucha tea, it is recommended to discard the entire batch and start fresh to prevent any potential health problems. It can also cause a foul odor and upset your stomach.
How Can one Identify Kombucha Mold?
While making Kombucha tea, mold often occurs, and the best way to identify it is by its appearance, texture, and smell. Further, you will see spots or patches on the surface of the liquid. Another confirmation of the presence of mold is that it can have a fuzzy or slimy texture. However, it is easily identified because of its unique variety of colors, such as green, white, or black, sometimes the color of the liquid. In Kombucha mold creates a sour taste and unpleasant smell, which is the top identification of the presence of mold.
How we Protect Kombucha tea From Mold
- It is not impossible to protect Kombucha tea from mold. You can do it by maintaining a clean and sanitary brewing environment. Use clean utensils, containers, and equipment when brewing Kombucha, and make sure to sanitize them properly.
2. Keep the brewing vessel covered with a breathable cloth to prevent dust and debris from entering.
3. It is also essential to avoid prolonged exposure to direct sunlight or extreme temperatures, as this can disrupt the fermentation process and make the tea more susceptible to growing mold on scoby.
What are the Significant Causes of Mold in Kombucha Tea?
The major causes of mold in Kombucha tea include:
- Contamination from mold spores.
- Lack of proper sanitation during the brewing process.
- Exposure to air and light.
In addition, Kombucha tea is a living culture that needs specific conditions to grow, and any changes can lead to Kombucha mold.
. Contaminated SCOBY
SCOBY stands for Symbiotic Culture Of Bacteria and Yeast and is the main ingredient in Kombucha tea. If the SCOBY is contaminated with mold spores or other pathogens, it can lead to the growth of mold in your tea. However, always use a healthy and clean SCOBY to ensure the quality of Kombucha tea.
Maintaining a clean environment is crucial to the success of any fermentation process. Poor hygiene practices, such as using dirty equipment or handling with unwashed hands, can lead to mold on SCOBY growth. Make sure to wash your hands and equipment thoroughly before brewing your tea.
Mold thrives in damp environments, so high humidity levels can encourage growth. If you live in a humid climate, keeping your brewing area well-ventilated is essential and ensuring that your tea is not exposed to moisture or water.
Like humidity, a lack of airflow can also contribute to mold growth in Kombucha tea. Ensure that your brewing container has adequate airflow and that you are not sealing it too tightly. A breathable cloth cover or cheesecloth can help to ensure proper airflow while keeping out contaminants.
Overfermentation can create an environment that’s more hospitable to mold growth. To prevent this, monitor the fermentation process carefully and avoid leaving your tea to ferment for too long. However, the ideal fermentation time can vary depending on factors such as temperature and the strength of your tea, but most kombucha teas are ready to drink after about 7 to 14 days.
Is it safe to Drink Kombucha Tea with mold?
It is not safe to drink Kombucha tea with mold. It is because mold can produce mycotoxins, which can cause health problems if ingested. Mycotoxins are toxic substances that can cause various symptoms, including nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and liver damage. If you notice Kombucha mold in tea, it is best to discard the entire batch and start fresh to avoid any potential health risks.
Therefore, the causes of mold in kombucha tea are multifaceted, ranging from contamination to poor hygiene to environmental factors. We at Cayo’s follow good brewing practices and monitoring to avoid the occurrence of mold in the tea. We also minimize the risk of mold growth and enjoy the many potential benefits of this ancient drink.