FAQs

1. What exactly happens during fermentation?

2. What is the difference between raw, fermented food and conventional pasteurized fermented food?

 3. Aren´t bacterial cultures potentially harmful?

 4. What to do if the lid bulges and the contents bubble?

 5. How are SauerCrowd fermented veggies made?

 6. How do our raw, ferments differ from conventional canned/pickled foods?

 7. Which positive properties for body and health can result from the regular consumption of fermented vegetables?

 8. How can SauerCrowd´s products be integrated into my daily diet?

 9. How many fermented vegetables should I eat per day?

 10. What happens when I heat up raw, fermented vegetables?

 11. Help, a “white layer” has formed on my vegetables - what is this?

 12. How can I recycle my SauerCrowd glasses as best as possible?

 13. Where are we sourcing our ingredients?

 14. How long is the shelf-life of the fermented products

 15. Is it bad if the cold chain is broken?

 16. What should I do with the packaging from shipping?                                             

17. What are CFU´s?

 18. Are the gut-healthy bacteria actually making it to my small intestine?

 

 

1. What exactly happens during fermentation?  

Fermentation is a process in which organic substances (e.g. sugars or carbohydrates in vegetables) are converted by microorganisms (e.g. our lactic acid bacteria). Various foods that are very familiar to us humans, such as Beer, wine, cheese, kimchi, sourdough, vinegar, kefir, kombucha or our well-known sauerkraut and pickles can result. 

 In the case of our vegetables, the biochemical process is triggered by the vegetables being sealed off from the oxygen in a brine for several days to weeks at different temperature levels. In this environment, the lactic acid bacteria already present on and in every vegetable begin to work and produce lactic acid when the carbohydrates are split. Lactic acid bacteria make our product alive and have three functions:

 • They are therefore responsible for the refreshing umami taste and crunch of our fermented vegetables.

 • The lactic acid that our vegetables produce acts as a natural and sustainable preservative. 

 • They have many positive properties for our gut and brain health (read more about that on our Instagram and in the gut-mind box)

2. What is the difference between raw, fermented food and conventional pasteurised fermented food?

Raw, fermented food is only preserved by the natural process of lactic acid bacteria forming, raw means there are no heat treatments used to extend the shelflife of the product.

Conventional fermented food is always fermented and after that pasteurised (only if stated differently). You can make the easy check on any food products label, if the product is rawl, fermented, it will be indicated on the label for sure (its a sign of quality).

3. Aren´t bacterial cultures potentially harmful?

There is no need to worry about scary microbes like Clostridium botulinum. All of our products are fermented to completion, resulting in a final average of 3.4 pH. This is well below the EFSA minimum food safety pH of 4.4.

Because of our special wild fermentation process and the high hygiene and food safety standards in our fermentation kitchen, we are able to sell such a delicate product without any risk to consumers' health!

4. What to do if the lid bulges and the contents bubble?

Since we do not stop the fermentation after filling into the preserving jars by heating or adding preservatives, but only by cooling, fermentation gases can continue to be produced, which in exceptional cases lead to a curvature of the lid. Perhaps it will also bubble when you open the glass for the first time - but a bottle of champagne or sparkling wine will do the same.

 All of these are signs of the liveliness and bio-activity of our product and are completely harmless concerning consumption. We understand that people get confused about the sparkling since the mass food industry has suppressed raw, fermented products for too long. SauerCrowd is here to change this circumstance. 

 The sparkling of the jar is a sign of quality! It shows you that the product was not pasteurised - food that is alive.

5. How are SauerCrowd fermented veggies made?

"We can not tell you that, it is our biggest secret and nobody should know". This is what you would hear from a lot of large scale food producers. We at SauerCrowd stand for transparency and sharing everything with our Crowd. 

So here the short version for you:

Fermenting foods is a thousand years old process of preserving most naturally. We make use of this ancient technique to create taste, flavor, and gut-supportive bacteria for everyone. Key ingredients are our organic vegetables, salt, and lots of love. 

  Our production takes place in small batches within our fermentation kitchen in Amsterdam. Cutting, salting, kneading, massaging. Most of our processes are done by hand. Very high food safety and quality standards are a must-have hereby.

6. How do our raw, ferments differ from conventional canned/pickled foods?

 Pickling is a sterile process where hot vinegar is added to vegetables to preserve them in a sealed jar. Fermenting (specifically our wild fermentation) is different. Wild fermentation occurs when a specific salt concentration is added to vegetables with water and spices and then the mixture is allowed to ferment over time at room temperature. During fermentation, a succession of microbes occurs.

By the end of this process only Lactobacillus species, and sometimes Leuconostoc species, are present in the vegetable mixture. These bacteria produce lactic acid and this lactic acid preserves the vegetables. 

7. Which positive properties for body and health can result from the regular consumption of fermented vegetables?

Almost everyone familiar with food and health-related topics has somehow heard about fermentation at least once in his life. It is only now that people start recognizing the importance of raw, fermented food in their diet. Regular consumption of fermented vegetables may bring several positive properties for health and body to everyone. 

Fermented unpasteurised food helps to strengthen your immune system!

Vitamins, enzymes, minerals and trace elements present in fresh vegetables are largely preserved and even new ones are created during the fermentation process: vitamins C and A, the very rare vitamins B12 and K2, omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, valuable enzymes and of course the activated lactic acid bacterial cultures.

Our gut wall & microbiome house over 70% of the cells that make up our immune system. The probiotic lactic acid bacteria strengthens and supports the intestinal flora and thus contributes to a fundamental strengthening of the immune system - starting from one of our most important organs - Our Gut.

During fermentation, carbohydrates are broken down into lactic acid, which is why fermented vegetables are more digestible and digestible than raw food. This allows the body to utilize the numerous nutrients in a meal much better. As a result, you feel less full and tired after a meal with fermented vegetables.

Raw, fermented food supports weight loss and dieting

Joe Alcock, a professor at the University of Mexico recently suggested that gut microbes may be under selective pressure to manipulate human eating behavior in ways that increase their own fitness, sometimes this can be at the expense of our own health. We create a microbial imbalance within our gut microbiome within a high fat, high sugar Western diet, which can lead to overweight, depression, and anxiety.

Fermented food as a supporter:

 In the long run, uncontrolled appetite is reduced by replacing "bad" yeast in the intestine with "good" lactic acid bacteria. When the intestinal flora is in balance, the cravings are reduced to carbohydrates and sweets. Fermented vegetables are therefore an ideal food for accompanying any diet and for weight and fat reduction in general.

Fermented food fighting inflammations                                Lactic acid bacteria help to detoxify the digestive tract and thus have an anti-inflammatory effect throughout the body, including symptoms such as acne or neurodermatitis. Regular consumption of fermented vegetables can, therefore, lead to an improved complexion.

Fermented food can help with so much more! 

(read more about that on our Instagram and in the gut-mind box content)

9. How many fermented vegetables should I eat per day?

If you are not yet a Sauerkraut/Kimchi daily eater, the trick is to start slowly. Give your gut the chance to adapt to this new and wonderful supply of gut-friendly bacteria from SauerCrowd ferments. 2 tbsp per day is enough for the first 5 days. After that, you can increase the serving size. 

Fun fact: high-level flatulence occurs at the beginning means just that your microbial diversity was already very low. A positive sign now that you found SauerCrowd for your diet. Its time to continue the intake of raw, fermented food to increase the diversity and resilience in your gut again. 

After a few weeks of consumption, you will see a stable microbial diversity and probably start snacking half a jar a day. On your bread, pizza, salad bowl, burger, even pancakes. Caution SauerCrowd can become positively addictive :) 

10. What happens when I heat raw, fermented vegetables?

Fermented vegetables can also be used for cooking. E.g. there are many delicious recipes with sauerkraut or kimchi, but most of the nutrients are lost through heating and thus the health-promoting properties of our fermented vegetables. The probiotic lactic acid bacteria, in particular, dies off around 63 degrees Celsius. We, therefore, recommend that you always our fermented vegetables primarily “fresh” and raw.

 11. Help, a “white layer” has formed on my vegetables - what is this?

This is probably not mold, but simply harmless, naturally created yeast. This can occasionally happen with freshly fermented vegetables. In theory, you can even eat the "Kahmhefe", but we recommend that you simply remove the “infested” upper layer of the vegetables - everything underneath is really safe to eat.

12. How can I recycle my SauerCrowd glasses as best as possible? 

You do not have to throw away our mason type jars after the kraut is gone. There are countless uses in your household. Above all, the glasses can be used again in the kitchen, e.g. as drinking glasses for cocktails, for preserving jams or for storing spices. If the smell of the ferment does not disappear from the rinsed lid, please contact us and we will be happy to add some fresh lids to your next order.

Furthermore, we are working on getting original mason jars into our assortment with up-cycling kits, that is future thinking. For now, get inspired by up-cycle tips on our social media channels and Give Your Jar an Afterlife.

In the case that you do not want to use the jars anymore please bring them to a recycling container in your neighborhood. But do NOT rinse before - “spoon clean” is sufficient. Glas jars do not have to be cleaned before going to the sorting system. The rinsing at home only uses energy and water and pollutes the environment by using detergents.

13. Where are we sourcing our ingredients?

All our ingredients are from biodynamic or organically certified farmers, most of them (90%) are local small/medium scale farms run by families we know. 

Read more about where our ingredients come from in the supply chain section on this website (in our story). 

14. How long is the shelf-life of the fermented products

For our Krauts & Kimchi: From the moment our products are leaving our fermentation kitchen we give the best before the date of 3 months shelf-live. 

Fermented food stored in the fridge with a closed lid can be stored often way longer (see the Koreans fermenting kimchi for years in tradition).

After opening the jar, we recommend eating the kraut & kimchi within 3 weeks (make sure you always use a clean fork when taking out of the jar. 

15. Is it bad if the cold chain is broken?

Our vegetables, once they are fermented, are very stable and last for a few hours or even days without refrigeration - so it is no drama if the cold chain is interrupted. The old Dutch seafarers, who had sauerkraut barrels with them, or Korean riders, who countered various diseases and deficiency symptoms with their kimchi, nor our grandparents in the basement did not have any electrical fridge and still preserved their ferments for months. 

 Nevertheless, we imposed ourselves on keeping a cold chain as much as possible. Because temperatures higher than 10 degrees lead to increased activity of the living lactic acid bacteria (probiotics) in our jars. The resulting fermentation gases can then cause the lid to expand and the brine to leak. As we said, this does will not affect the shelf life of our ferments, but of course, we would like our jars to reach you in good condition. So please keep the cool chain as much as possible, so do we. 

16. What should I do with the packaging from shipping?

Our packaging materials are made from biodegradable materials (corn starch, hemp, etc.) and therefore environmentally friendly packaging. You can just throw them into your organic waste-bin or even on your compost (depending on the type of compost fermentation). 

If you live close to our fermentation kitchen you are also more than welcome to bring back the packaging materials for some healthy treat in exchange

 17. What are CFU´s?

CFU´s or Colony Forming Units 

= The number of viable microbial cells able to replicate under ideal conditions that are present in a given sample of the product.

We test our products on the amount of CFU´s on Day1 of the shelf-life as well as day 90 of the shelf-life in the lab. 

Our results are even for us astonishing. With over 1 mio CFU´s per serving size (2 tbsp) we are reaching a way over the average result. In our opinion, this is how food should be produced and sold, alive and full of gut-friendly bacteria.

We can count on one hand how many food producers can sell food that is alive and full of CFU´s which even reach your small intestines. We are one of them. 

Show us your numbers food industry, this should become the standard!!

18. Are the gut-healthy bacteria making it to my small intestine?

The best part about getting your probiotics through fermented vegetables is that the probiotic species of bacteria in fermented foods are acid-tolerant microbes. Unlike probiotic capsule bacteria that are grown in pure cultures in a lab, fermented vegetable bacteria are adapted to thrive in a multitude of harsh conditions.

The probiotic bacteria found in our ferments thrive at a pH 3 and can survive for up to two hours at a pH as low as 1. Since your stomach acid is about pH 2 and food only stays in the stomach for about 30 minutes to 3 hours, fermented vegetable microbes are more than adapt to survive the digestive journey and they will make to your intestines to become part of your microbiome. (Source Culture Guru)

So get your probiotic bacteria intake from naturally fermented vegetables and let your microbiome smile from the inside out. 

Do you want to know more about the Gut microbiome and the gut-mind connection? Order your first gut-mind box today and let Moritz & Michelle take you on a journey through your body and mind. 

Any more questions? Feel free to send us an email: info@sauercrowd.nl