A fermentation expert assists in the metabolic process of converting organic compounds (typically carbohydrates) via some microorganisms like bacteria, fungi, algae, or yeast. These experts can assist with the research and development of fermentation processes, process design, and optimization for specific applications like food and beverage production, biofuel production, pharmaceutical manufacturing, or industrial enzyme production. These experts can assist with selecting the proper microbial strain, quality control, scaling up production of existing operations, troubleshooting problems, and training. Liquid-state fermentation (LSF) allows microorganisms to grow and metabolize in liquid culture. In contrast, solid-state fermentation (SSF) is often completed in trays of media allowing the fermentation to occur in the near absence of free liquid by instead using an inert substrate or a natural substrate as solid support.
A fermentation expert combines the scientific training of a microbiologist with the process and plant knowledge of the chemical engineer, and experience with a range of process types and microbial platforms is part of the makeup of an experienced practitioner. The expert will have experience in culturing microorganisms at a lab scale and the ability to develop an efficient process and optimize it for required outcomes. The outcomes will depend on the product being made. These might include biomass, e.g., single-cell protein animal feed or yeast for the food and brewing industry; intracellular products made by the cells, e.g., proteins or nucleic acids; secreted products made by the cells, e.g., proteins or antibiotics; or metabolic products, e.g., ethanol, butanol or organic acids. Fermentation experts help develop a process that maximizes product quality and yield while minimizing cost. They help develop environmentally aligned processes and aim to use sustainable and cheap feedstocks while maximizing the production rate, ensuring process intensity to minimize plant costs.
Maximizing product yields is critical to efficiently using feedstocks, often the most expensive input. Fermentation scientists will also be informed about downstream processes to ensure that the fermentation products can be recovered efficiently and scaled up so that processes developed are scalable without loss of performance. As with most processes, technology transfer will need to be transferred from development facilities to manufacturing plants and potentially to multiple manufacturing facilities in the case of successful deployment.
For over 25 years, Lee Enterprises Consulting (LEC) has assisted clients with biofuels, biomaterials, bio-based chemicals, biotechnologies, and feedstocks. With over 150 consultants worldwide, we have diverse expertise and geographical reach to assist any bioeconomy project. Our experts are seasoned professionals with an average of over 30 years of industry experience. A key benefit to LEC is our ability to assemble these professionals into multidisciplinary teams with a single point of contact, allowing us to fully integrate a project’s technical, scientific, and regulatory aspects and combine them with years of hands-on experience. Please take a look at our experts and the services we provide. Call us at 1+ (501) 833-8511 or email us for further information.