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Biotechnol.Agron.Soc.Environ.201216(4),509530

CharacteristicsofAfricantraditional
beersbrewedwith
FranoisLyumugabe(1,3),JacquesGros(2),John
Nzungize(4),EmmanuelBajyana(3),PhilippeThonart(1)

sorghummalt:areview
(1)

Univ.LiegeGemblouxAgroBioTech.WalloonCentreofIndustrialBiology
(CWBI).UnitofBioIndustry.PassagedesDports,2.B5030Gembloux
(Belgium).Email:flyumugabe@gmail.com(2)UniversitCatholiquedeLouvain.
EarthandLifeInstitute(ELIM).UnitofBreweryandFoodIndustries.Croixdu
Sud,2Bte7.B1348LouvainlaNeuve(Belgium).
(3)

NationalUniversityofRwanda.FacultyofSciences.UnitofBiotechnologies.
BP117.RWAButare(Rwanda).(4)InstitutdesSciencesAgronomiquesdu
Rwanda(ISAR).RueDputKamuzinziKiyovu,47.BP5016.RWAKigali
(Rwanda).
ReceivedonSeptember13,2011;acceptedonAugust6,2012.
TraditionalsorghumbeersareproducedinseveralcountriesofAfrica,but
variationsinthemanufacturingprocessmayoccurdependingonthegeographic
localization.Thesebeersareveryrichincalories,Bgroupvitaminsincluding
thiamine,folicacid,riboflavinandnicotinicacid,andessentialaminoacidssuch
aslysine.However,thetraditionalsorghumbeerislessattractivethanWestern
beersbecauseofitspoorerhygienicquality,organolepticvariationsandshorter
shelflife.Researchintothemicrobiologicalandbiochemicalcharacteristicsof
traditionalsorghumbeersaswellastheirtechnologieshavebeenperformedand
documentedinseveralAfricancountries.Thisreviewaimstosummarizethe
productionprocessesandcompositionalcharacteristicsofAfricantraditional
sorghumbeers(ikigage,merissa,doro,dolo,pito,amgbaandtchoukoutou).Italso
highlightsthemajordifferencesbetweenthesetraditionalbeersandbarleymalt

beer,consumedworldwide,andsuggestsadaptationsthatcouldbemadeto
improvetheproductionprocessoftraditionalsorghumbeer.
Caractristiquesdesbirestraditionnellesafricainesbrassesaveclemaltde
sorgho(synthsebibliographique).Lesbirestraditionnellesbasedesorgho
sontproduitesdansplusieurspaysdAfrique,maislesprocessusdefabrication
varientenfonctiondeleurlocalisationgographique.Ellessonttrsrichesen
calories,envitaminesdugroupeBcomprenantlathiamine,lacidefolique,la
riboflavineetlacidenicotinique,etenacidesaminsessentielstelsquelalysine.
Cependant,lesbiresafricainesbasedesorghosontmoinsattrayantesqueles
biresoccidentalesenraisondeleurqualithyginique,delavariationdeleurs
caractristiquesorganoleptiquesetdeleurcourteduredeconservation.Les
recherchessurlescaractristiquesmicrobiologiques,biochimiqueset
technologiquesdesbirestraditionnellesafricainesontteffectueset
documentesdansplusieurspaysdAfrique.Lobjectifdecetterevue
bibliographiquesurlesbirestraditionnellesbasedesorghoestdercapitulerle
processusdefabricationetlescaractristiquesdesbirestraditionnellesafricaines
(ikigage,merissa,doro,dolo,pito,amgbaettchoukoutou)basedesorgho,tout
enprcisantlesdiffrencesmajeuresaveclabirebasedemaltdorge.Cette
revuesadaptegalementauprogrsaccomplidanslamliorationdesbires
traditionnellesafricainesbasedesorgho.Motscls.Crale,sucre,
fermentation,malt,sorgho,fermentation,bire,grain,orge,produitalimentaire,
Afrique.
Keywords.Cereals,sugar,fermentation,malt,sorghumgrain,beers,grain,barley,
foods,Africa.

1.INTRODUCTION
Sorghum,unlikebarley,isverywelladaptedtothesemiaridandsub
tropicalconditionsprevailingovermostoftheAfricancontinent(Agu
etal.,1998).Likebarley,sorghumbelongstothegrassfamilyof
Gramineae.InAfrica,sorghumgrainisthemajorcerealcropusedto
producethetraditionalopaquebeers(Novellie,
1976;Asiedu,1991).However,onlycertainsorghumvarieties(e.g.red
grain)arespecificallyusedtoproducesorghumbeers.Thesebeersare
knownasikigageinRwanda(Lyumugabeetal.,2010),tchoukoutouin
BeninandTogo(Kayodetal.,2005),doloinBurkinaFaso(Dickoet
al.,2006),pitoorburkutuinNigeriaandGhana(Ekundayo,1969;

Faparusietal.,1973),amgbainCameroon(ChevassusAgnesetal.,
1979),doro
Focuson:
510Biotechnol.Agron.Soc.Environ.201216(4),509530

ThemanufacturingprocessesofAfricantraditionalsorghumbeer
essentiallyinvolvesmalting,drying,milling,souring,boiling,mashing
andalcoholicfermentation,butvariationsmayoccurdependingonthe
geographiclocalization(Haggbladeetal.,2004).Thesetypesofbeer
differfromEuropean(lager)typesinthefactthatlacticfermentation
alsooccursduringsorghumbeerprocessing.Inaddition,African
traditionalsorghumbeerisconsumedwhileitisstillfermenting,and
thedrinkcontainslargeamountsoffragmentsofinsolublematerials
(Rooneyetal.,1991).Thesefragmentsaremainlystarchresiduesand
dextrinsthatarenotdigestedduringmashingandfermentation
(Glennieetal.,1986).Sorghumbeersbearverylittleresemblancein
appearancetoWesternbeermadewithbarley.However,somestudies
havesuggestedthattheuseofsorghummalt(insteadofbarleymalt)in
lagerbeerbrewingisunlikelytosucceedbecauseofsomeinherent
problems(enzymes,starchcharacteristics,polyphenols)associatedwith
sorghum(Aisien,1982;Palmer,1991;Bajomoetal.,1994).
Severalstudiesintothemicrobiologicalandbiochemicalcharacteristics
oftraditionalsorghumbeersaswellastheirtechnologieshavebeen
carriedoutanddocumentedindifferentAfricancountries(Novellie,
1962;Ekundayo,1969;Faparusietal.,1973;Dirar,1978;Tisekwa,
1989;Chamunorwaetal.,2002;Maouraetal.,2005).Averyvaried
yeastandlacticbacteriaacidflorahasbeenfoundinAfricansorghum
beers,althoughSaccharomycescerevisiaeandheterofermentative
Lactobacillususuallypredominate(Novellie,1976;Sefadedehetal.,
1999;Chamunorwaetal.,2002;Maouraetal.,2005;Kayodetal.,
2007a;Lyumugabeetal.,2010).TraditionalAfricansorghumbeersare
veryrichincalories,Bgroupvitaminsincludingthiamine,folicacid,
riboflavin,andnicotinicacid,andessentialaminoacidssuchaslysin

(ChevassusAgnesetal.,1979).Thebeersareconsumedatvarious
festivalsandAfricanceremonies(e.g.,marriage,birth,baptism,the
handingoverofadowry,etc.)andconstituteasourceofeconomic
returnforthefemalebeerproducers.However,inthemajorityof
Africancountries,traditionalsorghumbeersarelessattractivethan
Westernbeersbrewedwithbarleymaltbecauseoftheirpoorhygienic
quality,lowethanolcontent,organolepticvariationandunsatisfactory
conservation(Novellieetal.,1986;Tisekwa,1989;Sannietal.,1999;
Lyumugabeetal.,2010).Thisreviewaimstosummarizethe
productionprocessesandcharacteristicsofAfricantraditionalsorghum
beers.Italsohighlightsthemajordifferencesbetweenthesetraditional
beersandthefamiliarbarleymaltbeer,
LyumugabeF.,GrosJ.,NzungizeJ.etal.

consumedworldwide,andsuggestsadaptationsthatcouldbemadeto
improvetheproductionprocessesoftraditionalsorghumbeer.
2.MALTING
Maltingisthegerminationofcerealgraininmoistairundercontrolled
conditions,theprimaryobjectivebeingtopromotethedevelopmentof
hydrolyticenzymes,whicharenotpresentintheungerminatedgrain.
Themaltingprocessessentiallyinvolvessteeping,germinatingand
limitingcerealseedlinggrowth,onceenzymeshavebeenproducedfor
thedegradationofstarchandproteinsinthecerealgrain,butbeforethe
exhaustionofthepolysaccharide.
2.1.Steeping
Thesteepingorsoakingofcerealgraininwateriswidely
acknowledgedasthemostcriticalstageofthemaltingprocess(French
etal.,1990;Dewaretal.,1997).Thisisaconsequenceofthe
importanceofinitiatinggerminationsuchthatmodificationofthe
endospermstructurewillprogressatarateproducingmaltofthe
desiredquality.DuringtheWesternbeersbrewingprocess(Figure1),
maltingbeginswiththesoakingofthebarleyinwaterfor2daysat10

16Cinordertoincreasethemoisturecontenttoaround45%(Moll,
1991;Waitesetal.,2001).Periodically,thewateristemporarily
drainedoffandaerationisprovided,thuspreventinganaerobic
conditionsthatcancausegrainembryodamage.InAfrica,the
traditionalsorghummaltingprocessalsostartswiththesoakingofthe
sorghumgraininwaterfor10to24hatambienttemperature(Maoura
etal.,2009;Lyumugabeetal.,2010),but,inthiscase,thewaterisnot
renewedoraired.Thesteepoutmoisturecontentofsorghumgrainis
affectedbybothsteepingtimeandtemperature(Dewaretal.,1997).
However,thesteepingperiodatagiventimevariesaccordingtothe
sorghumcultivar.Avariationinmoisturecontentof32.4to43.4%has
beenobservedaftersteeping26sorghumcultivarsfor24h(Kumaret
al.,1992).Thesteepmoistureincreasesasthesteepingtemperature
risesfrom10to30C,foranygivenperiod(Novellie,1962).The
effectofsteepingconditionshasbeenextensivelyinvestigatedinan
attempttoincreasesorghummaltamylaseactivity.In1962,Novellie
reportedthatsteepingtimehadlittleeffectonthefinaldiastaticpower
ofsorghummalt.Steepmoistureof42to48%,attainedaftersteeping
sorghumfor18to22hat30C,isoptimalforenzymaticactivity
(Moralletal.,1986).Anincreaseinsteepmoisturewithasteepingtime
ofbetween12and20hat30Cisaccompaniedbyacorresponding
increaseinreducingsugarcontent,
orchibukuinZimbabwe(Chamunorwaetal.,2002),merissainSudan
(Dirar,1978),mtamainTanzania(Tisekwa,1989),bilibiliinChad
(Maouraetal.,2005)andkaffirinSouthAfrica(Novellieetal.,1986).
Africantraditionalsorghumbeer
511

Malting

Mashing
Filtration Wort boiling

Wort treatment (cooling)


Fermentation
Maturation
Filtration and sterilization
Beer
Starch adjuncts
Spent grains
Barley grains
Steep tank

Mill

Germination vessel

Adjunct cooker
Kiln
Malt store

Mash tun


Lauter tun or filter press

Hops
Copper

Whirlpool


Plate heat exchangers

Selected yeast store

Fermenter (cylindroconical or traditional)

Maturation tank

Clarification

Sterile filtration or pasteurization


Packaging (bottles, cans, kegs and tanks)

Figure1.BrewingprocessofWesternbeersProcddebrassagedesbires
occidentales(Moll,1991;Waitesetal.,2001).

andincoldandhotwaterextracts(Owuamaetal.,1994).Thelevelof
increaseinthesefeaturesofthesorghummaltappearstobedirectly
proportionaltoitsdiastaticpower(Pathiranaetal.,1983).Asteeping
regime,andinparticulartheuseofairrestsandafinalwarmwater(40
C)steepingperiodhasbeenshowntoenhancesorghummaltquality,
includingamylaseactivity(Ezeoguetal.,1995).Alaterstudy
specificallyconfirmedtheimportanceoftheeffectofairrestsonthe
levelofsorghummaltamylaseactivity(Okungbowaetal.,2002).It
islikelythatthepresenceofoxygenleadstoamorerapidincreasein
seedlingmetabolicactivity(Dewaretal.,1997).Thediastaticpowerof
malthasalsobeenshowntoincreasewithsteepingtemperature(up30
C)andwiththeleveloffreeaminonitrogen(FAN)(Dewaretal.,
1997).Steepingthesorghumgrainindilutealkalineliquor(0.1%of

Ca(OH)2,KOHorNaOH)hasbeenshowntosignificantlyenhancethe
diastaticactivityofsorghummaltespeciallyamylaseactivity(Okolo
etal.,1996;Okungbowaetal.,2002).
2.2.Germination
Aftersteeping,thesorghumgrainsarethenspreadoutonagermination
device(e.g.greenplantainleavesoraplasticsheet)toformalayer(2
to3cminthickness)andthegrainsarekeptcoveredfor23daysat
ambienttemperature(ChevassusAgnesetal.,1979;Lyumugabeetal.,
2010).Thelayerofgrainsissometimesturnedovertwiceadayandthe
initialmoisturelevelismaintainedbysprayingwithwater.This
techniqueissimilartotheoldgerminationprocessthatwaspreviously
usedtoproduceWesternbeers,wherebarleygrainswerespreadouton
maltingfloorstoadepthof1020cmfor35daysat1619C(Moll,
1991).However,Westernbreweriesnowusevariousmechanized
systems,whichhavegrainbedsofabout1mindepth.Thesegrains
bedsareaeratedwithmoistcoolairandturnedmechanicallyevery8
12htoaidrespirationbythegrainandtopreventthebuildupofheat;
otherwisethegrainembryomaybecomedamaged.
512Biotechnol.Agron.Soc.Environ.201216(4),509530

Germinationinvolvestheoutgrowthoftheplumuleandradicleofthe
seedlinguntilsuitableenzymes(e.g.starchdegradingenzymesand
proteases)havebeenproducedforthemalt(Palmer,1989).During
germination,thehormonegibberellicacid(GA),atlowconcentration
(0.10.2ppm),inducesthebarleyaleuronelayertoproduceendosperm
degradingenzymessuchasamylase,protease,pentosanasesand
endobetaglucanase(Palmer,1989),butthishormoneplaysnosuch
roleinenzymedevelopmentinsorghum(Aisienetal.,1983;Palmer,
1989).Insorghum,amylaseandcarboxypeptidasesareproducedby
thescutellum,whileendoglucanase,limitdextrinaseandendo
proteasedevelopinthestarchyendosperm.Thesecontrastswith
maltingbarleywhereamylase,endoprotease,limitdextrinaseand
endoglucanasedevelopinthealeuronelayer,while

carboxypeptidasesandamylasearefoundinthestarchyendosperm
(Aisienetal.,1983;Palmer,1989).Phosphate,animportantmineral
foundinbarleyaleuronetissueandinthesorghumembryo(Palmeret
al.,1989),mayaccountfordifferencesintheenzymeproducing
potentialsofthebarleyaleuroneandthesorghumembryo(Aguetal.,
1998).Theendospermofmaltedsorghumretainsstarchcompaction
andisnotasfriableasthebarleymaltgrain.Malting(respirationand
root)lossofsorghummaltsisabout20%,whilethemaltinglossof
barleymaltisabout7%after6dofgrowthat25Cand16C(Palmer
etal.,1989).
Anotherimportantphysiologicaldifferencebetweensorghumand
barleymaltsisthatmaltedsorghumgrainscontainlowlevelsofendo
glucanaseandamylase(Aisienetal.,1983).Intheirexperiments,
Betaetal.(1995)foundthatlevelsofamylaseactivity (25183U.g
.
1
1
)andamylaseactivity(1141SDUg )insorghummaltvaried,
dependingonthesorghumvariety.Recently,acomparativestudyof
whitesorghumvarietiesindicatedthattheF220varietiesfrom
Senegalhaveanamylaseactivityof312,6U.g1andaamylase
activityof62,7U.g1(Khadyetal.,2010).However,comparedto
barleymalt,whoseamylaseactivityis400U.g1(Tayloretal.,1993),
sorghummaltisnotadaptedtobeusedinanefficientbrewingindustry.
Severalassumptionsexplaintheweaknessofamylaseactivityin
sorghummalt.Uriyoetal.(1999)explainedthisweaknessintermsof
aninteractionbetweenamylaseandpolyphenolsduringthe
extractionprocess,whereasDufouretal.(1992)showedthatamylase
activityremainsweak,eveninsorghumvarietieswithlowpolyphenol
content.Otherauthorsclaimthatinhibitorsapartfrompolyphenols
wouldbepresent,causingpartialsolubilizationofamylaseoraweak
outputduringmalting(Palmeretal.,1989;Aguetal.,1997a).
AccordingtoTayloretal.(1993),ungerminatedsorghumalsodoesnot
exhibitamylaseactivity.
LyumugabeF.,GrosJ.,NzungizeJ.etal.

Thisisfundamentallydifferentfrombarley,wheretheungerminated
graindoesexhibitamylaseactivity.Itappearsthattropicalcereal
grainssuchaspearlmillet,sorghumandmaizepossessonlythe
ubiquitousformofamylase,whereastemperateTriticeaecereals
suchasbarley,wheatandryealsopossesstheendospermspecific
formoftheenzyme,whichispresentinthesegrainsatseedmaturity
(Zeigler,1999).
Germinationofsorghumgrainsatatemperatureofbetween25and30
Cisrecommendedforthedevelopmentofoptimumamylaseand
diastaticpowerinsorghummalt(Novellie,1962;Okaforetal.,1980).
At30C,3to7daysofsorghumgraingerminationproduceswell
modifiedmaltswithahighdiastaticpower,andanincreaselevelof
hotwaterextract,sugarcontentandfreeaminonitrogen(Morralletal.,
1986;Lasekanetal.,1995),buttheoptimalgerminationtimeand
temperaturevarywiththesorghumvariety(Novellie,1962;Okaforet
al.,1980;Demuyakoretal.,1992).Activityofamylaseand
amylasehasbeenshowntodeveloptoagreaterextendintheyellow
andredsorghumvarietiesthaninwhitesorghumvarietieswhen
germinatedat30C(Aguetal.,1997b).However,germinating
sorghumattherelativelyhightemperatureof35Coratlower
temperaturesofbetween15and20C,slowsdownamylaseformation
andconsequentlyreducesdiastaticpower(Morralletal.,1986).
Moreover,germinatingsorghumgrainsheavilyinfectedwithmoulds
produceamaltwithlowamylaseactivity(Aguetal.,1999).Microbial
infectionofNigeriansorghumgrainhasbeenshowntobecausedby
thepresenceofAspergillussp.,Penicilliumsp.,Neurosporasp.,
Rhizopussp.,Fusariumsp.,Curvulariasp.andDreschlerasp.(Boboye
etal.,1994).Formaldehyde(0.1%)canbeaddedtothesteeptoretard
fungalactivity(Palmeretal.,1989).Asaresultoffungalgrain
infection,someAfricantraditionalopaquebeershavebeenreportedto
containdifferentamountsofaflatoxins(Nikanderetal.,1991).
Recently,studiescarriedoutbyMatumbaetal.(2011)indicatethe
presenceofaflatoxin(6,6to54,6g.kg1)inasorghummaltfrom
Malawi.

Maltase,orglucosidase,whichcatalysesthehydrolysisofmaltose
intoglucose,ispresentinungerminatedsorghumanddoesnotincrease
significantlyduringmalting.Sorghummaltaseisaveryheavy
molecularweightenzyme,whosesolubilitycharacteristicsdifferfrom
thoseofbarley.Sorghumglucosidaseissolubleinwater,butisalso
activeinitsinsolublestateandadheresstronglytoinsolublesolids
(Novellie,1982;Tayloretal.,1994).Thedevelopmentof
glucosidaseinsorghumisinfluencedbylengthofgerminationperiod
andtemperature(Aguetal.,1997a).Inbarley,glucosidaselevelsare
generallylowerthanthoseofsorghummalt,especiallyat30Candat
day5ofgermination(Aguetal.,1997c).Thesorghummalt
Africantraditionalsorghumbeer

withthehighestmaltaseactivity,however,producesthelowestglucose
levelsinwort,suggestingthatmaltaseisnotthedominantenzyme
producingsugarduringthemashingofsorghummalts(Aguetal.,
1997a).
2.3.Kilning
513

glucosecontent(Palmer,1989;Dufouretal.,1992).Whilesome
studieshavefoundbarleymaltwortstocontainmoremaltosethan
glucose(Briggsetal.,1981;Dufouretal.,1992),othershavereported
thatsorghummaltwortscontainsimilarlevelsofglucoseandmaltose
(Taylor,1992).Thedifferenceobservedintheproportionsofglucose
andmaltosesugarsinsorghumandbarleymaltwortshasbeen
attributedtothelowlevelsofamylaseinsorghummalt(Palmer,
1989).Otherauthors(Tayloretal.,1994)haveattributedthehighlevel
ofglucosefoundinsorghummaltworttothecatalyticactivityof
glucosidase,fromthemaltasefamily,inhydrolysingmaltoseinto
glucoseinsorghummaltwort.However,Aguetal.(1997c)showed
thatthereisnodirectrelationshipbetweentheglucosidaselevelsin
sorghumorbarleymaltandthemaltosetoglucoseratiosfoundintheir
worts.Itisworthnotingthat,inthatstudy,barleymaltdevelopeda

higherlevelofglucosidasethandidsorghummalt,butthatit
producedlessglucoseandseveraltimesmoremaltoseinthewortthan
itwasthecaseinsorghumwort.Themainreasonforthelimitationof
maltoseproductioninsorghummaltwortislikelytobeinadequate
gelatinizationofsorghumstarchratherthaninadequatelevelsof
hydrolyticenzymes(Dufouretal.,1992;Aguetal.,1997c).Results
obtainedbyAguetal.(1997b)showedthatdifferentsorghumvarieties
maltedandmashedundersimilarconditionspresentedwidevariations
intheirsugarprofilesduetoseasonalandprocessingdifferences.For
example,theauthorsshowedthat,whenmaltisproducedat30C,the
white(ISCV400)andyellow(SS20)sorghumvarietiesproducehigh
glucoseandmaltoselevels,whileSS9(redvariety)andSS16(white
variety)producelowglucoseandhighermaltoselevels.However,these
lasttwovarietiesproducehigherlevelsofglucoseandmaltosewhen
maltisproducedat20C.However,thevariationscausedbyseed
varietyandmaltingtemperaturedonotalterthegreaterinfluence
exertedbystarchgelatinizationonthesugarprofileofsorghumworts
thanonthesugarprofileofbarleyworts(Aguetal.,1998).
Generally,sorghumstarchgelatinizationtemperatures(6781C)are
farhigher(Akingbalaetal.,1982;Betaetal.,2001)thantherange
quotedforbarleystarchof5160C(Lineback,1984).Furthermore,
thesetemperaturesincreasethethermaldeactivationofthesorghum
maltenzyme(Guerraetal.,2009).Consequently,thesimultaneous
gelatinizationandhydrolysisofstarch,whichoccursduringmashingof
thebarleymalt,isproblematicalinthecaseofsorghummalt.Although
shortmashing(gelatinization)periodsat75Cfollowedbya
conversion(saccharification)periodat65Cwouldimprovethe
developmentofextractsfromsorghummalt,unacceptableextractloss
wouldstilloccurbecauseofenzymeinactivationand
Kilninginvolvesthedryingofthegreenmaltinakilnorovenata
relativelyhightemperatureuntiltherootletsbecomefriableorbrittle.
Kilninghastheobjectiveofstoppingembryogrowthandenzyme
activity,whileminimizingenzymedenaturation,andtheprocess
developsflavorandcolor(melanoidincompounds).IntheAfrican

traditionalsorghumbeerbrewingprocess,thegerminatedsorghum
grainsaredriedunderthesunandarestoredunderprotectionduring
thenighttoavoidrehydration.Generally,thisdryingsteptakes23
daysdependingonsunlightintensity.However,intheWesternbeer
brewingprocess,thegerminatedbarleygrainsarekilnedviaatwo
stageprocess.Thegrainarefirstofalldriedat5060Candarethen
curedat80110C(Moll,1991).
Aspartofthesorghummaltingprocess,Novellie(1962)advocatedthe
kilningofthemaltupto50C.However,whilstkilningperiodsat80
Cmayenhancetheflavorofthemalt,suchatemperaturemaydamage
theenzymaticactivityofthemalt(Aisienetal.,1987)andreduce
volatilecompounds.Kilningmaltsintwostages,initiallyto55Cand
subsequentlyto65C,hasbeenshowntoproducegoodmaltswitha
considerablereductioninmoistureandahighersugarcontentthan
kilningatasingletemperatureof65C(Owuamaetal.,1994).Thus,
thetwostagekilningprocessallowsforthegreatersurvivalof
hydrolyticenzymesandforthemalttoacquireitscharacteristicflavor.
3.MASHING
Theobjectivesofmashingaretoformandextractintosolution,
fermentablesugars,aminoacids,vitamins,etc.,frommalt.Malt
normallyprovidesmostofthepotentialfermentablematerialsand
sufficientenzymestogenerateawellbalancedfermentationmedium.
Africansorghumbeerisuniqueasafermentedbeverageinrequiring
starch,notonlyasasourceofsugar,butasathickeningandsuspending
agent.Gelatinizedstarchgivesthebeeritscharacteristiccreamybody
andkeepsinsuspensiontheparticlesofgrainandmaltthatareessential
constituentsofbeer.
Oneoftheproblemsinvolvedinsorghumbeerbrewingistheefficient
conversionofthestarchextractsintofermentablesugarsforyeast
(Saccharomycescerevisiae).Regardingtherelativeamountsof
fermentablesugarsinsorghumandbarleyworts,themajordifference
hasbeenfoundtoresideinthe

514Biotechnol.Agron.Soc.Environ.201216(4),509530

inadequategelatinization(Palmeretal.,1989).Indeed,relativelyhigh
levelsofstarchextractcomparabletothoseofbarleymaltshavebeen
obtainedbyusinganonconventionalmashingprocedure.The
procedureinvolves,decantingactiveenzymewortaftermashing
sorghummaltat45Cfor30min,andgelatinizingthestarchygrist
residueat80to100Cbeforemixingwiththewort,toachievea
saccharifyingtemperatureof6365C(Palmer,1989;Igyoretal.,
2001).Theviscositiesofsorghummaltwortshavebeenshowntobe
similartothoseofbarleymalts(Igyoretal.,2001),butthefermentable
extractsofthesesorghumwortshavebeenshowntobestilllowerthan
thoseofbarleymalt(Palmer,1989).Theseresultssuggestthatsmall
quantitiesofamylaseinsorghumwortalsoaffectsaccharification.
Thedrawbackshighlightedaboveinusingsorghummaltinbeer
brewingledtotheapproachproposingtheuseofmixturesofmalted
barley(3040%)withsorghum(6070%)duringmashing(Okaforetal.,
1980;Goodeetal.,2003),ortheadditionofexogenousenzymestothe
unmaltedsorghum(Daleetal.,1989;Bajomoetal.,1994).Inthislast
case,theadditionofexternalenzymesisassociatedwithprocessing
difficultiessuchasaminonitrogen(FAN)depletion(Daleetal.,
1989).Theadvantageofincludingapercentageofmaltedsorghumasa
sourceofendogenousproteaseshasalsobeenreported.Theadditionof
maltedsorghumavoidstheneedtoaddtheseenzymes,thereby
avoidingthepoorfoamretentionassociatedwithcommercial
proteolyticenzymes(Aguetal.,1998).However,theseoptimal
solutionsforreducingthelevelsofnonfermentablesugarsinsorghum
wortsareinappropriateinanAfricantraditionalbrewingcontext
becausethetropicalclimateisnotconducivetobarleycultivation,and
commercialenzymesareveryexpensive.Nevertheless,a20%(w/v)
sweetpotatofloursubstitutionforsorghummalthasbeenshownto
increasethelevelofamylaseinsorghumwort(Etimetal.,1992).
Pearlmillet(Pennisetumglaucum)maltalsoappearstohavesome
advantagescomparedtosorghumasithasahigheramylaseactivity
andhigherFANlevels(Pelembeetal.,2004).InRwandantraditional

sorghumbeerbrewing,theassociationofsorghummaltandEleusine
coracana(uburo)ortheadditionofbananajuice(umutobe)during
sorghummaltmashingincreasesthefermentablesugarsinsorghum
wort(Lyumugabeetal.,2010).Asamylaseistheenzymeresponsible
forthehydrolysisofstarchintomaltose,thehighlevelofactivityof
thisenzymeinEleusinecoracanamaltcomparedwithsorghummalt
(Taylor,2009)couldexplaintheincreaseinfermentablesugarsinthis
wort.However,brewingprocessesusingamixtureofsorghumwith
localcultureshavenotbeenextensivelyinvestigated.
LyumugabeF.,GrosJ.,NzungizeJ.etal.

Generally,aftermashing,themashisfilteredbeforeboiling.Duringthe
Africantraditionalbeerbrewingprocess,filtrationisachievedby
simpledecantation(Lyumugabeetal.,2010)orviaarudimentarypress
filtermadeofanylonclothstretchedoverabowlandrakedwitha
woodenstick(Maouraetal.,2009).Incomparisonwithbarley,
sorghummaltmashesfilterpoorly(Aisienetal.,1987).Thisisclearly
relatedtodifferencesinthequalitiesoftheendospermcellwallsof
sorghumandbarley.Unlikeinbarley,theendospermcellwallsin
sorghumarenotsubstantiallybrokendownduringmalting(Glennie,
1984).Thecellwallsthemselvesarerichinwaterunextractable
glucoronoarabinoxylans(Verbruggen,1996)andsorghummaltappears
tobedeficientinthewalldegradingenzymeendoglucanase(Aisien
etal.,1983).Thisseemstoposeaseriousfiltrationproblemfor
sorghummaltmashes,andtheadditionofexogenoushemicellulolytic
enzymesisprobablyonlyashorttermsolution.
Boilingofwortisperformedforseveralreasons,inparticulartobring
aboutthedenaturationofmaltenzymesandanyenzymessupplements,
andthesterilizationofthewort.Althoughthisstageexistsinthe
brewingprocessofmanyAfricantraditionalsorghumbeers(e.g.dolo,
tchoukoutou,amgba)(ChevassusAgnesetal.,1979;Dickoetal.,
2006;Kayodetal.,2007b),itisabsentfromthebrewingprocessof
traditionalsorghumbeers(e.g.ikigage,mtama,impeke)fromEast
Africancountries(Tisekwa,1989;Nzigamasaboetal.,2009;

Lyumugabeetal.,2010).IntheEuropeanbeerbrewingprocess,barley
wortobtainedfromthemashistransferredtoacopper(kettle)for
boiling,alongwithdriedhopsorhopextracts.Hopsaretheflower
conesofthefemalehopvine(Humuluslupulus),andtheycontain
andacids,primarilyhumulonesandlupulones.Thesegivetobeerits
bitterflavor,afterisomerizationofacidsintoisoacidsduring
boiling,andtheyalsohelpinhibitcertainbeerspoilagebacteriaand
maintainfoamstability.Africantraditionalsorghumbeersaregenerally
unhopped.However,severalstudieshavereportedthepossibilityof
usingAfricanplants(e.g.Vernoniaamygdalina,Gongronema
latifolium,Garciniakola)insteadofhopsinAfricansorghumbeers
(Ogundiwinetal.,1991;Okohetal.,1995;Ajebesoneetal.,2004;
Okoroetal.,2007;Adenugaetal.,2010)becausethehopplantisa
temperatecropandcannotbesuccessfullygrowninAfricatropical
countries.Vernoniaamygdalina,knownasbitterleaf,canbeused
instead,becauseitresembleshopsinitsantimicrobialproperties
(Mbotoetal.,2009;Obohetal.,2009)andbitterflavor(Ajebesoneet
al.,2004;Adenugaetal.,2010).Furthermoretheadditionofextractof
V.amygdalinaleavestosorghumwortincreasesthelevelsofamino
acids,mainly
Africantraditionalsorghumbeer

isoleucine,leucineandhistidine(Lasekanetal.,1999).However,
furtherresearchneedstobedirectedinparticulartowardsthe
contributionofthisplanttotheorganolepticpropertiesofsorghum
beer.
4.FERMENTATION
515

Fermentationistheimportantstepbywhichyeastconvertsthesugars
inthewortintoethylalcohol.InWesternbreweries,thefermentation
processisstartedbyselectedyeaststrains(S.cerevisaeorS.
carlsbergensis)andthefermentationtimerangesbetween815daysat
1016C(Moll,1991;Waitesetal.,2001).InthecaseofAfrican

traditionalsorghumbeers,sorghumwortisinoculatedwithatraditional
leaven,andfermentationtimevariesbetween10and24hinambient
temperature.
5.TYPESOFAFRICANTRADITIONALSORGHUMBEER
BREWING
Generally,Africantraditionalsorghumbeersarebrewedwith
pigmentedsorghumvarieties(redorbrown).Thewhitevarietiesare
alwaysmixedwithredsorghumbecauseconsumersprefertodrink
coloredbeerswhichtheybelievetobehealthy(Kayodetal.,2005).
TheseAfricansorghumbeersarenotaclear,sparklingliquid,but
opaquewithsuspendedsolids(57%).Thebeershavearatherlow
alcoholcontent(24.5%v/v),apHofbetween3.3and4andalactic
acidrateofabout0.26%.Theircolorvariesfromapalebufftoapinky
brownaccordingtheingredientsused.Usually,Africansorghumbeers
haveatouchoffruitinessaddedtotheirfermentationodor.Theyare
beerisconsumedinanactivelyfermentingstateandthereforetheir
shelflifeisaquiteshort(24h72h)(Novellieetal.,1986;Tisekwa,
1989;Maouraetal.,2009;Lyumugabeetal.,2010).However,African
traditionalsorghumbeersvaryintheirdenominationandtheir
productionprocesses,accordingtotheirgeographiclocalization.
5.1.IkigageofRwanda
Ikigageoramarwaisatraditionalalcoholicbeveragemanufacturedin
Rwandawithmaltedsorghum(Figure2).Thetraditionalprocessof
ikigagemanufacturehasbeendescribedbyLyumugabeetal.(2010).
Afterwashing,redsorghumgrainsareimmersedinwater(kwinika)for
24h.Thegrainsarethendrainedinabagwithastonetopfor24hso
thattheprocessofgerminationiscompletedandgrainrootletsappear
(kumera).Thegrainsarespreadoutonaclothinawetplace.Ashis
spreadovertheclothandleavesoftheeucalyptusorbananatreeare
laidontopoftheash.Thesorghumgrainsarethenspreadoutonthe
leaves,toencouragegermination.Thegrainsaredriedunderthesunfor
atleasttwodaysat29C.Whenthegrainsaresemidry,therootlets

areremoved(kuyavunga).Thesemidrymaltgrainsaregroundor
crushed.Brewersheatwater(20l)toboilingandaddapproximately2
kgofgroundmaltgrainsinordertogelatinizethestarch.Thissolution
isthenmixedwithgroundmalt(16kg)inalargecontainer.Themixing
temperatureistypicallybetween63Cand71C.Followingthe
infusionprocess,coolwaterisadded(40l)tobringthetemperature
backtobetween34Cand40C.Insomecases,brewersleavea
decanterofthismixturetorestforapproximately3hinorderto
eliminatethedraffs(imvuzo).Aftercooling,thetraditionalleaven
(umusemburo)isinoculatedinordertostartthefermentationprocess.
Thefermentationcontaineriscoveredwithleavesofthebananatree,
andthenbyaclothandalid.After12to24hof
Africantraditionalleavenisaresultofthespontaneousfermentationof
sorghummaltwort(Kayodetal.,2005;Lyumugabeetal.,2010).The
manufacturingmethodsofthisleavenarediverseinAfricaanddepend
onbuiltiningredients.Table1showsthetypesofmicroorganisms
involvedinspontaneousfermentationintraditionalsorghumbeer
brewing.Veryvariedyeastsandbacteriaflorahavebeenfoundin
Africansorghumbeers,althoughS.cerevisiaeandLactobacillussp.
usuallypredominate(Novellie,1976;Maouraetal.,2005;Kayodet
al.,2007a;Lyumugabeetal.,2010).UnlikeEuropeanbeermadewith
barley,Africansorghumbeersaretypicalexamplesoflactic
fermentationfollowedbyalcoholicfermentationinwhichinitially,
lacticacidbacteria(LAB),andlateryeasts,playthedominantrole
(Novellie,1982;Holzapfel,1997;Kayodetal.,2005;Maouraetal.,
2009).Duetotheirhighergrowthrate,bacteriatypicallydominatethe
earlystagesoffermentation.Asymbioticrelationshipcouldexplainthe
simultaneouspresenceofyeastsandLAB.LABcreateanacid
environmentfavorabletotheproliferationofyeasts.Theseyeasts
producevitaminsandincreaseotherfactors,suchasaminoacids,toaid
thegrowthofLAB.
UnlikeEuropeanbeers,wherethedesiredflavorisoftencritically
affectedbywildyeastsandothermicroorganisms,Africanbeersmay
displayawidevariationintastesandaromaswhilestillbeing

acceptabletotheconsumer.AsinthecaseoftheBelgianbeer,Lambic,
Africansorghumbeersaretheproductofmoreorlessspontaneous
fermentation,inthatpitchingisnotpracticed.Ontheotherhand,
AfricansorghumbeersdifferfromLambicinthattheBelgianbeeris
subjectedtoaverylongpostfermentationperiodduringwhichyeasts
ofthegenusBrettanomycesareresponsibleforcreatingthetypical
bouquetofthatbeer(VanderWalt,1956).
516Biotechnol.Agron.Soc.Environ.201216(4),509530LyumugabeF.,GrosJ.,
NzungizeJ.etal.
Table1.MicroorganismsinvolvedinthefermentationofthemainAfrican
traditionalsorghumbeersMicroorganismesimpliqusdanslafermentationde
laplupartdesbirestraditionnellesafricainesbasedesorgho.
Beername
Ikigage
Predominantmicroorganismsinvolved
SaccharomycescerevisiaeIssatchenkiaorientalisLactobacillusfermentum
LactobacillusbuchneriLactobacillussp.
SaccharomycescerevisiaeKluyveromycesmarxianusCryptococcusalbidius
DebaryomyceshanseniLacticacidbacteria
SaccharomycescerevisiaeCandidatropicalisKloeckeraapiculataHansenula
anomalaTorulasporadelbrueckiiSchizosaccharomycespombeKluyveromyces
africanusLactobacillusspp.Leuconostocspp.
SaccharomycescerevisiaeLactobacillusplantarumLactobacillusdelbrueckii
LactococcuslactisLactococcusraffinolactis
CountryReferences
RwandaLyumugabeetal.,2010

Tchoukoutou

SaccharomycescerevisiaeTorulasporadelbrueckii
SaccharomycespastorianusLactobacillusdivergens

Benin

LactobacillusfermentumLactobacillusfructivorans
Lactobacillussp.
BilibiliorAmgba
Pito
ChadMaouraetal.,2005
GhanaSefaDedehetal.,1999VanderAaKhleetal.,2001
Burkutu

SaccharomycescerevisiaeSaccharomyceschavelieri
LeuconostocmensenteroidesCandidaacetobacter

NigeriaandGhana

Dolo

SaccharomycescerevisiaeLactobacillusdelbrueckii
LactobacillusfermentumPediococcusacidilactici
LactobacilluslactisLactococcuslactis

BurkinaFaso

DoroorChibuku
ZimbabweJespersen,2003Chamunorwaetal.,2002
SaccharomycescerevisiaeCandidakruseiKloeckera
SouthernAfrica
apiculataLactobacillusfermentumLactobacillus
plantarumLactobacillusbrevisLactococcusdextranicum

Kaffir

Africantraditionalsorghumbeer517

Sorghum grains (Amakoma)


Water (Amazi)
Malted sorghum (1 kg)

Steeping (Kwinika, 24 h)
Wort (Igikoma, 4 l)
Juice of Vernonia amygdalina sheets (Umubirizi, 250 ml)

Fermentation( 28 C, 24 or 48 h)
Cooking(until evaporation 12)

Germination (Kumera, 24 h)


Drying(under sun, Kwanika, 48 to 72 h, 29C)

Mixing
Grinding


Fermentation ( 28 C, 72 h)

Mashing (infusion, 63 to 71 C)
Warm water

Cool water (40 l)

Malted sorghum (1 kg) and roasted sorghum (0.5 kg)


Cooling (34 to 40 C)

Fermentation ( 28 C, 24 h)


Spent grains (Imvuvu)
Decantation (3 h)


Fermentation( 30 C, 12 or 24 h)
Leaven (Umusemburo)

Ikigage beer

Figure2.Traditionalmanufacturingprocessesoftraditionalikigagebeer(adapted
fromLyumugabeetal.,2010)Processustraditionneldefabricationdelabire
ikigage(adaptpartirdeLyumugabeetal.,2010).

fermentation,ikigageisreadyforconsumption.Theethanollevels,
solubleproteinandthepHofikigageare2.2%(v/v),9.2g.l1and3.9
respectively(Lyumugabeetal.,2010).
5.2.MerissaofSudan
MerissaisatraditionalalcoholicbeveragemanufacturedinSudan
usingmaltedredsorghumormillet.Dirar(1978)describesacomplex
procedure(Figure3)formakingmerissabeer.Theredsorghum
grainsaremalted,driedandreducedintoflour.Ungerminatedsorghum
ismilledintoafineflourandcookedintwoequallots:thefirstlotis
lightlycookedtoagreyishbrownpastewhile,thesecondlotiswell
cookedtoabrownpaste.Thesetwolotsarethenmixedandallowedto

cool.Theresultingproduct,futtara,isagelatinizedsolidmaterial.
Onepartmaltflourismixedwithaquantityofwaternecessaryfor
goodhumidificationandisincubatedatroomtemperaturefor36huntil
lacticfermentationoccurs.Theacidpasteobtained(calledajeen)is
cookedinacontainerand
518Biotechnol.Agron.Soc.Environ.201216(4),509530LyumugabeF.,GrosJ.,
NzungizeJ.etal.

differentregionsofthecountry(Chamunorwaetal.,2002).The
traditionaldorobrewingprocess(Figure4)hasbeendescribedby
Benhuraetal.(1989).Thebrewingprocessstartswiththemaltingof
redsorghumtoproduceasubstancecalledmasvusvu.Sorghumgrains
aresoakedinwaterfor24hatroomtemperature.Theyarethenplaced
inasack,washedandlefttogerminatefor23daysatroom
temperature.Afterthisstage,theseedlingsaresundriedfor3daysand
thesemidrymaltgrainsaregroundorcrushed.Approximately24lof
waterismixedwith7kgofsorghummaltflour.Thismixtureisheated
whilestirringuntilboiling.Themasvusvuiscooled,dilutedinclaypots
andlefttosouratambienttemperatureforabout2days.Onthethird
day,thesouredproduct(mhanga)isboiledfor35h,reducingthe
originalvolumebyaquarterintheprocess.Theboiledmhangais
allowedtostandovernightafterwhichtime,moremaltflourisadded.
Typically,theamount
traditionneldefabricationdelabireMerissa(Dirar,1978).

mashingisthencarriedoutuntilthesubstancetakesonachestnut
color,withahighacidificationandacaramelflavor.Thisproduct
(calledsoorij)isthencooled.Malt(5%),waterandaninoculumofa
previousmerissaproductarethenaddedtothesoorijandthemixtureis
lefttofermentfor45h.Theresultingproduct(calleddeboba)isa
vigorouslyfermenting,thick,darksuspensionthatistoosourtodrink.
Aftercooking,futtaraismixedwithabout5%maltflourandis
successivelyaddedtothedeboba.After810hoffermentation,the
product,merissa,isfilteredthroughasuitablefabricmeshtopartially
retainthesolidparticles,whiletheliquidundergoesfullfermentation.

TheresultingdrinkhasapHof4andanalcohollevelofaround5%
(v/v).
5.3.DoroofZimbabwe
ThetraditionalsorghumbeerofZimbabweisknownasdoro,chibuku,
hwahwa,mhambaoruthwalain

Fine flour

Sorghum grains

Malted


Slightly cooked

Half-cooked

Coarse flour

Futtara

Lactic fermentation (Ajeen, 36 h)

Over cooked (Soorij)


Malt flour (5 %)
Malt flour (5 %)
Merissa
Water

Alcoholic Merissa fermentation proper (8-10 h)

Merissa beer
Water
Alcoholic fermentation (Deboda, 4-5 h)

Figure3.TraditionalmanufacturingprocessesofMerissabeerProcessusof

maltaddedisabouthalfthe
amountusedatthebeginningofthebrewingprocess.Onthesixthday,
somemasvusvu,two
tothreetimesmorethantheamountcookedonthefirstday,isprepared
andallowedtocool.Meanwhile,asmallportionofthemhangais
strainedandkeptseparately.Thestrainings(masese),therestofthe
unstrainedmhangaandthefreshportionofcooledmasvusvuareall
mixedtogetherwithwatertoyieldbiti.Themixtureislefttoferment
forabout2handtheresultingproduct,calledmadirwa,isthen
strained,mixedwiththepreviouslystrainedmhangaandlefttoferment
overnight.Thefermentationprocesstakes57daysdependingon
ambienttemperature.Ethanolisthoughttobethemainalcohol

containedinthefinaldorobeer(about4%v/v).
5.4.DoloofBurkinaFaso
Doloisapopulartraditionalalcoholicbeveragemanufacturedin
BurkinaFaso,andismostoftenmadefromredsorghummalt(Hilhorst,
1986).Thetraditionalmaltingprocessfordolo(Figure5)issimilarto
that
Africantraditionalsorghumbeer519

Sorghum grains

Steeping (24 h)
Water (24 h)


Germination (2-3 days)

Water

Drying (under sun, 3 days)

Milling

Mix malt flour (7 kg) with water (24 l)

Boiling

Cooling (Masvusvu)

Lactic fermentation (48 h, Mhanga)

Mix Mhanga, Masvusvu with water (biti)

Cooking (3-5 h)


Malt flour

Fermentation (2 h, Madirwa)

Masese

Mix Madirwa with Masese



Alcoholic fermentation (5-7 days)

Figure4.TraditionalmanufacturingprocessesofdorobeerProcessus
traditionneldelafabricationdelabiredoro.
Doro beer

520Biotechnol.Agron.Soc.Environ.201216(4),509530
LyumugabeF.,GrosJ.,NzungizeJ.etal.

describedfortheikigagebeer.Themaltobtainedisusedbythe
traditionalbrewers(dolotires)topreparethedolobeer.Sorghum
maltflourismixedwithwater(1:10,w/v)andthemixtureisthen
decanted(forapproximately1012h)toseparateofftheenzymatic
supernatantphasewithprecipitatecontainingstarch.Waterisaddedto
theprecipitateandthemixtureisboiledtogelatinizestarch,butthe
supernatantisnotboiled(Dickoetal.,2006).Aftercooling,the
precipitateisfilteredtoseparatethesolublecomponents(starch,sugars,
proteins,etc.)andtheresidue(usedasanimalfeed).Thefiltrateis
mixedwithprevioussupernatantandboiledat6570oCfor1216hin
ordertoobtainthewort.Thismethodseemstobeagoodtraditional
mashingprocessforproducingsorghumwortwithahighfermentable
rateforsugars,becausetheprocessovercomestheproblemofsorghum
starchgelatinizationandhydrolyticenzymedenaturation.Afterthis
stage,thewortiscookedandthencooledovernighttoroom
temperature(3040oC).Thecooledwortisinoculatedwitha
traditionalleaventostartthefermentationprocess,leadingtothedolo
beerafter1224h(Griffonetal.,20011,citedbyMaouraetal.,2009).
Thefinaldolobeerisopaque,witharedcolor,analcoholcontentof2
4%v/vandapHof45(Dickoetal.,2006).
5.5.PitoandburukutuofNigeria
PitoandburukutuaretraditionalNigerianalcoholicbeveragesbrewed
withredorwhitesorghummaltand/ormaize.Thebrewingprocessfor
pito(Figure6)hasbeendescribedbyEkundayo(1969).Briefly,
sorghumgrainsaresteepedinwater(2448h)andthen,drained.The
grainsarethenallowedtogerminateforfourtofivedaysandaresun
driedbeforegrinding.Themaltflourismixedwithwaterandthe
mixtureisthenboiledfor34htoformaslurry.Duringthemashing
stageofburukutuproduction,adjunctsareaddedintheformofgari(a
farinaceousstarchypowderproducedfromcassava,Manihot
esculenta).However,adjunctsarenot
1

GriffonD.&HbertJ.P.,2001.Bireetdolo:documentdecours.Montpellier,France:
EnsiaSiarc.


Sorghum grains

Steeping (24 h)

Germination (48 days)


Water

Drying (under sun)

Grinding

Mix malt flour with water

Juice from

Hibiscus esculenta

Decantation (10 -12 h)

Water
Sediment

Cooking (100 C)

Spent

Filtration


Filtrate
Supernatant

Mashing (65-70 C)

Cooking (100 C)

Cooling wort (30-40 C)

Fermentation (12-24 h)
Starter (previous Dolo)

Dolo beer

Figure5.TraditionalmanufacturingprocessesofdolobeerProcessus
traditionneldelafabricationdelabiredolo.
Africantraditionalsorghumbeer
5215.6.AmgbaorbilibiliofCameroon

Amgba,wellknownbythenamebilibili,isaverypopulartraditional

alcoholicbeverageinCameroon(amongtheBayaethnicgroup).The
drinkisbrewedprimarilyusingsorghummalt(mouskouariordjigari
variety),butmilletmalt(foniovariety)canalsobeassociatedwith
mouskouari.Thetraditionalbrewingprocess(Figure7)forthisbeer
hasbeendescribedbyChevassusAgnesetal.(1979).Thesorghum
grainsaresoakedinwaterfor12to72hatroomtemperatureinorder
toobtainamoisturelevelof35to40%.Thegrainsarethenleftina
heapinacontainerorspreadoutonagerminationdevice(green
plantainleaves,beatensoil,rocks)toformalayer(3to5cmin
thickness)andarekeptcovereduntilrootletsappear.Ifneeded,initial
moisturelevelsaremaintainedbysprayingwithwater.The
germinationtimeisonaverage4days.Afterthisstep,thegrainsare
driedunderthesunforamaximum1dayandgroundintoafineflour.
Thismaltflouristhenmixedwithwaterandsap(gombo)fromtrees.In
particulargombofromTriumfettasp.seemstoimprovetheflocculation
andfiltrationoftheinsolublematterduringdecantation.Thisoperation
usingthesapresemblesthatcarriedoutduringtheclarificationof
barleybeersinEuropeanbreweries.However,thesorghumbeer
clarificationprocessusinggomboafterfermentationhasnotbeen
extensivelyinvestigated.After1to2hofdecantation,theenzymatic
supernatantphaseiscarefullycollected,whilethesettledresidueis
cookeduntilboilinginordertogelatinizethestarch.Aftercooking,the
thickmashobtainedismixedwith

Sorghum and/or maize grains


Steeping (48 h)

Germination (4-5 days)


Drying (under sun)
Water

Grinding

Mix malt flour with water


Adjuncts (gari) are addedt to Burukutu production

Boiling (3-4 h)

Cooling

Spent

Filtration

Natural inoculum

Fermentation (acidification 10-12 h)

Boiling

Cooling

Starter (sediment from previous brew)

Fermentation (12-24 h)

Pito or Burukutu beer

Figure6.TraditionalmanufacturingprocessesofpitobeerProcessus
traditionneldefabricationdelabirepito(Asiedu,1991;Achi,2005).

addedduringtheproductionofpito(Faparusietal.,1973;Ekundayo,
1969).Aftercooling,thepasteisfilteredandleftinspontaneouslactic
fermentation(acidification)atroomtemperatureforapproximately12
h.Morewaterisaddedandthemixtureisthencookedfor3hand
cooledtoaround20to29C.Cooledwortissubsequentlyleftto
fermentatroomtemperaturefor1224h.Thetworesultingproducts
are:atopclearsupernatant,calledpitoandathickbrownsuspension,
calledburukutu.
theprevioussupernatantat6570C.Themixtureisthenfilteredby
decantationorusingatraditionaldevicesimilartothefiltertankused
inindustrialWesternbrewing.Veryoften,thetraditionalbrewerleaves
thefiltrateinspontaneouslacticfermentationtoacidifythewort.After
boiling,thewortiscooledtoapproximately30Candtheninoculated
withtraditionalleaven,affouktostartfermentation.After12to24h
offermentation,theresultingamgbacanbeconsumed.
522Biotechnol.Agron.Soc.Environ.201216(4),509530
LyumugabeF.,GrosJ.,NzungizeJ.etal.

5.7.TchoukoutouofBeninandTogo
Tchoukoutou,orchakpaloisatraditionalalcoholicbeverageproduced
inBeninandTogoprincipallyusingsorghummalt(redandbrown
varieties),butotherstarchsources,suchasmilletormaizecanbeused
asadjunctsorassubstitutes(Kayodetal.,2005;Osseyietal.,2011).
Tchoukoutouandchakpaloaredistinguishablebyboththeirappearance
andtaste.Tchoukoutouisanopaque(turbid)andacidicbeerwhile
chakpaloisaclearandsweetfluidbeer.Thetraditionalbrewing
process(Figure8)fortchoukoutouhasbeendescribedbyKayodetal.
(2005,2007b).Approximately27kgofgrainsaresoakedinwaterfor9
to12handthenlefttogerminateduring72to85h.Afterthisstep,the
grainsaredriedunderthesun(715h)andgroundintoafineflour.
Thismaltflouristhenmixedwithwaterandleftindecantation.After

decantation(12h),theenzymaticsupernatantphaseiscollectedand
theresiduecontainingstarchisgelatinizedbygradualheatinguntil
boilingfor2h.Thethickmashobtainedismixedwiththeprevious
supernatantphaseandleftinastateofacidifying(lactic)fermentation
(1314h).Afterthisstage,themixtureisfilteredtoobtainthewort.
Aftercooking(69h),cooledwortisinoculatedwithatraditional
leaven(knownaskptkptintheBariba,DentiandYoruba
languages)inordertostartalcoholicfermentation.After13to14hof
fermentation,tchoukoutouisreadyforconsumption.Thisbeerissour
withapHof3.2:itcontainsarelativelyhighbutvariablelevelofsolids
andcrudeprotein(Kayodetal.,2007b)andhasa4%(v/v)alcohol
content(Osseyietal.,2011).
2

VanLiereM.J.,1993.Copingwithhouseholdfoodinsecurity:alongitudinaland
seasonalstudyamongtheOtammariinNorthWesternBenin.Wageningen,The
Netherlands:WageningenUniversity.

Sorghum grains

Steeping (12-72 h)
Drying (under sun, 24 h)
Water, 12-72 h


Germination (4 days)

Grinding

Mix malt flour with water

Sap from Gombo (Triumfetta sp.)

Cooking (100 C)

Decantation (1-2 h)

Sediment

Supernatant

Mashing (65-70 C)

Filtration

Spent

Cooking (100 C)

Cooling (30 C)


Fermentation (12-24 h)

Filtration
Traditional leaven Affouk

Spent

Ambga beer

Figure7.TraditionalmanufacturingprocessesofambgabeerProcessus
traditionneldelafabricationdelabireambga(Chevassusetal.,1979).
Africantraditionalsorghumbeer
523

beingproducedbyatleast3,500BC,andprobablymuchearlier(Briggs
etal.,1981).Thefirstmentionsofsorghumbeerormilletbeercome
fromtheArabtravellerswho,inthe6thand7thcenturies,praisedthe
meritsofbeermanufacturedintheSahelregion,inparticularthe
merissabeerofSudan(HuetzdeLemps,2001).Themanufacturingof
sorghumbeersisatraditionpreservedbyAfricanwomenbrewersand
passeddowntothenextgeneration.InAfricantradition,sorghumbeer
symbolizesthewoman,representingsilenceandatacitacceptanceof
theententebetweenthepeoples.Inancienttimes,royaltiesduetothe
localauthoritieswerepaidonlyintheformofsorghumorsorghum
beer.SorghumbeeriscalledthemilkofthehoeinAfrica(amata
yisukaintheRwandeselanguage),affordingthebeernoblequalities
(DeLame,1995).Sorghumbeerisanancestralbeveragewidelyused
invariousfestivalsandAfricanceremoniessuchasmarriage,praying
forrain,communicationwithancestors,births,thehandingoverofa
dowry,circumcision,burialceremonies,andthepopularannual
sorghumfestival(Kayodetal.,2007b;Lyumugabeetal.,2010).In
RwandaorBurundi,dowryhandingoverceremoniesstartinitiallywith
theconsumptionoftraditionalsorghumbeer.Therepresentativesofthe
twofamiliesgreeteachotheraroundaclayjug(calledanikibindi)
filledwithsorghumbeerbecauseikigagebeersymbolizesthe
complementarityofthesexes(DeLame,1996).Traditionalsorghum
beerisalsoconsumedaftercommunityworkormeetingsofmutual
associations,inordertoprovideenergy(VanLiere,19932,citedby
Kayodetal.,2007b).
Traditionalsorghumbeerismainlyconsumedbythepoorestinsociety,
andcontributessignificantlytothedietofmillionsofAfricanpeople
(Kayodetal.,2007b).Itisveryrichincalories.ItisalsorichintheB

groupvitamins

Sorghum grains

Steeping (9-12 h)
Water (9-12 h)


Germination (3-4 days)

Drying (under sun, 7-15 h)

Grinding

Mix malt flour with water

Decantation (1-2 h)

Sediment

Supernatant

Boiling (2 h)

Mashing (65-70 C)

Fermentation (acidification 13-14 h)

Filtration

Spent

Boiling (6-9 h)

Cooling (30 C)
Traditional leaven Kpt-kpt

Fermentation (13-14 h)

Tchoukoutou beer

Figure8.TraditionalmanufacturingprocessesoftchoukoutoubeerProcessus
traditionneldefabricationdelabiretchoukoutou.

6.SOCIOCULTURALASPECTSANDNUTRITIONAL
STATUSOFSORGHUMBEER
Africancerealbeers(madefromsorghum,millet,maize,etc.)have
ancientorigins.TheymayhaveoriginatedinEgyptorMesopotamia,
wherebeerswere
includingthiamine,folicacid,riboflavin,andnicotinicacidandishigh
inessentialaminoacidssuchaslysin(Table2).
AccordingtoChevassusAgnesetal.(1979),thesignificantdrymatter
lossesduringsorghumbeerpreparationseemtobebalancedbythe
improvement
524Biotechnol.Agron.Soc.Environ.201216(4),509530
Table2.Comparisonofchemicalcompositionsofsorghumgrain,maltedsorghum
andCamerooniansorghumbeeramgba(expressedfor100gdrymatter)

Comparaisondelacompositionchimiquedegraindesorgho,maltdesorghoet
biredesorghoduCamerounamgba(exprim100gdematiresche).
LyumugabeF.,GrosJ.,NzungizeJ.etal.
Table3.NutrientsinAfricanandEuropeanbeers(perportionof100g)
lmentsnutritifsdesbireseuropennesetafricaines(parportionde100g).

Calories(kj)Protein(g)Lysine(g%proteins)Lipids(g)Totalsugars(g)Non
digestiblesugars(g)Ash(g)Calcium(mg)Totalphosphorus(mg)Phytic
phosphorus(mg)Potassium(mg)Sodium(mg)Thiamine(g)Riboflavine(g)
Niacin(mg)
GrainMalt
3813809,49,83,33,72,82,285,686,22,33,72,11,7119,331932716685
39136114,514,7407a426b98231d4,35,3
Amgba
3948,77,20,386,10,34,120,7630112110126,93441c760
8
Calories(kj)Drymatter(g)Insolubledrymatter(g)Protein(Nx5,7)Carbohydrate
(g)Alcohol(g)Ca(mg)P(mg)K(mg)Na(mg)Fe(mg)VitaminB1(mg)VitaminB2
(mg)Niacin(mg)VitaminB12(g)Pantothenicacid(mg)VitaminCSource:Nout
(1987).

AfricanEuropeantraditionallagersorghumbeersbeers
1551647,94,03,900,60,34,83,22,94,02,26,3394084471,132,550,10,11
0,0030,050,040,430,710,030,090,180,04_
Source:adaptationofMaouraetal.(2009)fromChevassusAgnesetal.(1979)
adaptationdeMaouraetal.(2009)partirdeChevassusAgnesetal.(1979);Extreme
valuesvaleursextrmes:a:170545;b:168565;c:16935241;d:169300.

inproteinandaminoaciddigestibility,mineralavailabilityandvitamin
content.Germinationincreasesthedigestiveavailabilityofessential

aminoacids,whichispreservedinsubsequentstagesofproduction
(Taylor,1983).Fesolubilitygraduallyincreasesduringthebeer
makingprocess(germinationandfermentation)andishighlycorrelated
withphytateandreactivephenoliccompoundsintheproduct.
However,importantlossesofmineralsoccurduringthebeermaking
process,particularlyduringthemashingstage;thus,thequantityofFe
availabletoconsumersisrestricted(Kayodetal.,2007a).Phenolic
groupsandtanninspresentinsorghumgrainimpairthegrains
nutritionalvaluebysequesteringexogenousandendogenousproteins
intheformofindigestiblecomplexes(Maouraetal.,2009).Onthe
otherhandthebeerbrewingprocessremovessignificantamountsof
tannin(Dhankeretal.,1987;Osuntogunetal.,1989).Nevertheless,the
nutritionalvalueofsorghumbeersisgenerallyhigherthanthatof
Europeanbarleybeers(Table3)duetothepresenceofyeast,lactic
acidbacteriaandothersuspendedmaterial.Duetotheirlowalcohol
contentandthelargequantity
ofsuspendedsolids,manyconsumersconsidertheseindigenous
fermentedsorghumbeerstobemoreofafoodthanabeverage.
7.SHELFLIFEOFTRADITIONALSORGHUMBEER

Traditionallymadesorghumbeershaveapoorkeepingquality.The
limitedshelflife(stability)ofsorghumbeershasbeenreportedasthe
majorproblemconfrontingcommercialbrewersinSudan(Dirar,1978),
inTanzania(Tisekwa,1989),inNigeria(Sannietal.,1999)andin
Rwanda(Lyumugabeetal.,2010).
Sorghumbeerisconsumedwhileitisstillfermenting.Thewortfrom
whichthebeerismadeisnotheatedorotherwisetreatedpriortothe
additionofyeast,andthedrinkthereforealwayscarriesaresidual
microfloraoriginatingmainlyfromitsingredients.Theresultingbeeris
thusmicrobiologicallyunstablei.e.,infectedatvaryinglevelswith
yeastsandbacteria.Sannietal.(1999)isolatedthefollowingbacteria
fromdeterioratingsorghumbeer(pitoandburukutu):

525

Theflashpasteurizationmethodincreasestheshelflifeofindustrial
Europeanbeersbydestroyingspoilagemicrobes.Unfortunately,this
processisnotappliedintraditionalsorghumbeermaking.Early
attemptsatpasteurizationfailedbecausetheyledtoanunacceptable
increaseinbeerviscositythroughfurthergelatinizationofstarchand
eliminationofamylolyticenzymesandalsoeliminatedthebeers
characteristiceffervescencebykillingtheactiveyeasts(Novellieetal.,
1986).Ontheotherhand,pasteurizationofbeerresultsinthekillingof
alargeproportionofyeastcells,therebymakingtheBgroupvitamins
theycontainavailabletohumanconsumersofbeer(VanHeerden,
1987).Postfermentationpasteurizationhasenabledtheshelflifeof
tugelagoldsorghumbeertobeextendedtoanextentcomparableto
thatofEuropeanbarleybeers(Haggbladeetal.,2004).Recently,
Osseyietal.(2011)wereabletoobtainstabilityinthetchoukoutou
beerforatleast6monthsafter3hofbottlefermentationstoppedby
pasteurizationinawaterbathat7580oCfor15min.
8.USEOFSTARTERCULTURESTOIMPROVESORGHUM
BEER
Astarterculturemaybedefinedasapreparationormaterialcontaining
largenumbersofvariablemicroorganismsselectedfortheirproperties
andtheirharmlessness,whichmaybeaddedtoacceleratea
fermentationprocess(Holzapfel,2002).
Table4.SpoilageoftraditionalsorghumbeersDtriorationdesbires
traditionnellesbasedesorgho.
Africantraditionalsorghumbeer

Aspergillusaceti,Aspergillushansenii,Aspergilluspasteurianus,
Lactobacillusplantarum,Lactobacillusfermentum,Lactobacillus
brevis,Alcaligenes,Saccharomycescerevisiae,Micrococcusspp.,
Candidaspp.,Bacilluslicheniformis,Flavobacteriumspp.,Candida
mycoderma,Hansenulaanomala,Saccharomycesdiastaticus
(questionable),Bacillusspp.andRhodotorulaspp.

(VanderWalt,1956).Table4describesthetypesofspoilageduring
theconservationofsorghumbeers.
Sorghumbeersspoilrapidlybecausetheyareactivelyfermentingwhen
solid,withorganismsinadditiontoyeastsflourishingintherich
medium.Duringfermentation,yeastsinitiallyincreaseinnumber.Then
inthelaterstageoflogarithmicgrowththeproductionofethanolstarts
andproceedsduringthestationaryphase.Ithasbeenobservedthat
duringthistime,verylittleornoincreaseinthenumberof
contaminatingorganismsseemstooccur.However,attheendof
fermentation,theyeastsdie,orelsetheyundergoautolysisandtheir
cellconstituentsarereleasedintothebeer.Withlittleornocompetition
fromyeastsforthereadilyavailablenutrients,contaminating
microorganismsincreaserapidlyinnumberandtheirmetabolites
changetheflavorofthebeer.Becauseoftherelativelyhigh
temperatureoffermentation,thesesequentialeventsoccurwithina
shorttimeperiod.Thisperioddoesnotusuallyexceedmorethan3days
insummeror5daysinwinterbeforethisspoilageoccurs.The
metabolicactivitiesofmesophiliclacticacidbacteriaareprimarily
responsibleforthespoilage.Thesebacteria,alongwithother
undesirablebacteria(Acetobacter),produceaceticacid,volatileoff
flavors,fruityodors,andpellicleswhichrenderthetaste,odorand
textureofthebeerunacceptabletoconsumers
Microorganisms
Acetobactersp.Lactobacillussp.(homoferm)Leuconostocsp.
Obesumbacteriumsp.Pichiasp.Hansenulasp.Source:Haggbladeetal.(2004).
Chemicalproduced
OdorsOthereffects
AceticacidLacticacidDiacetylButter/honey
VinegarPellicleRopiness

Pediococcussp.

Lacticacid

Ropin

Lactobacillussp.(heteroferm) Lacticacidandaceticacid

Ropin

2,3butanediolDimethylsulfide
SweetParsnip,cookedcabbagemoldy
Zymomonassp.

Ethanol,CO2,acetaldehydeH2S RottenapplesRotteneggs

Candidasp.

Fruity

PelliclePellicle
Rhodotorulasp.
Saccharomycessp.(wildstrains) Diacetyl

Phenolic,butter/honey

526Biotechnol.Agron.Soc.Environ.201216(4),509530

InAfrica,startersareusedintheformoftraditionalleaven,resulting
fromspontaneousfermentationofthewort.Asaresult,boththe
desirableandnondesirablestrainscontainedintheleavenare
reintroducedwithfermentation,inducingthefermentationofthe
sorghumwort.Forexample,thefermentationoftheikigagebeeris
initiatedbyatraditionalleaven(umusemburo),whichcontains
Saccharomycescerevisae,Candidainconspicua,Issatchenkia
orientalis,CandidamagnoliaandCandidahumilis,Lactobacillus
fermentum,Lactobacillusbuchneri,Aspergillussp.,Staphyloccocus
aureusandEscherichiacoli(Lyumugabeetal.,2010).Selecteduseof
adominantspecies(e.g.S.cerevisiae,Lactobacillussp.orI.orientalis)
couldstabilizetheorganolepticqualityofthisbeer,increaseitsethanol
contentandimproveitshygienicquality.
Theuseofstartercultureshasbeenappliedsuccessfullytomany
products,andstudieshavebeenundertakeninthedevelopmentof
starterculturesformanyotherfermentedfoodsfromAfrica(kivunde,
ogiandtogwa)(Teniolaetal.,2001;Kirmaryoetal.,2002;Mugulaet
al.,2003).Researchonimprovementinthequalityoftraditional

sorghumbeerhasfocusedontheadaptationofthestarterculture.Sefa
Dedehetal.(1999)usedapurecultureofS.cerevisiaeandamixture
culturecomprisedofS.cerevisiaewithKloeckeraapiculataorCandida
tropicalis,toproduceinthelaboratoryapitobeercontainingahigh
ethanolcontentcomparedtotraditionalpito.Bycontrast,theyalso
foundthatamixtureofthreecultures(S.cerevisiae,K.apiculataand
C.tropicalis)asthestarterproducedapitobeerwithalowethanol
contentcomparedtothetraditionalpitobeer.Orjietal.(2003)found
thatS.cerevisiaeincombinationwithLactobacillusplantarum,asa
starterculture,alsoledtothesatisfactoryproductionofapitobeerwith
atasteandaromasimilartolocalpitobeer,butwithalowethanol
content.NGuessanetal.(2010)successfullyusedS.cerevisiaein
combinationwithC.tropicalisasstarterculturesforthealcoholic
fermentationofthetchapalobeer,butfurtherinvestigationsare
requiredbeforeadefinitiveconclusion.Gloveretal.(2009)showed
thatdolobeerproducedfromstartercombinationsofonestrainof
L.fermentumandbothS.cerevisiaestrainshadatasteandaromathat
didnotdiffersignificantlyfromthelocaldolobeer.Thiskindof
researchneedstobewidenedtoothertypesofsorghumbeerbecause
themicroorganismsinvolvedinspontaneousfermentationarevery
diverse.
Whenthestarterisadaptedtothesubstrate,itsuseimprovescontrolof
thefermentationprocessandthepredictabilityofitsproducts
(Holzapfel,1997).Inaddition,itfacilitatescontrolovertheinitial
phaseoffermentation(Holzapfel,2002).Inthesameway,thehygienic
qualityandacceptabilityofAfricantraditionalfoodscouldbeimproved
withtheuseofa
LyumugabeF.,GrosJ.,NzungizeJ.etal.

suitablestarter(Granetal.,2003).Theuseofstarterculturesalso
reducestheorganolepticvariationsandthemicrobiologicalinstability
ofAfricanfermentedfoods(Kirmaryoetal.,2002).
However,theuseofstarterculturesdoesnotprovideanabsolute
guaranteeagainstfailureoffermentationprocess,nordoesiteliminate

thehealthhazardsassociatedwithpathogens,toxinogens,ortoxic
componentsorresidues(Holzapfel,2002).Themetabolicactivitiesof
desirablefermentationmicroorganismsmustbesupportedbyobserving
thebasicprinciplesofGoodManufacturingPractice(GMP).
9.CONCLUSION
Traditionalsorghumbeershaveasocioculturalandnutritionalvaluein
Africa.ComparedtothebrewingofEuropeanbeerwithbarley,the
brewingoftraditionalsorghumbeerischaracterizedbythecomplexity
ofthemaltingprocess,thespeedandshorttimeofalcoholic
fermentation,andtheexistenceoflacticfermentation.
InAfrica,theassociationofsorghumwithothercereals(e.g.Eleusine
coracana,Pennisetumglaucum,sweetpotato)availableinAfricacould
solvetheproblemofthelackofamylaseinsorghummaltand
provideameansofavoidingtheuseofthecommercialenzymesand
barleymalt.
Thepasteurizationofsorghumbeerappearsmostpromisingfor
resolvingthebrewersperennialprincipalproblemofashortershelf
life.However,inorderforthistohappen,researchwillbeneededto
ensurethenecessaryrefinementsinpasteurization,andfactorybrewers
wouldneedtoadoptthepasteurizationprocessastheirproduction
standard(Haggbladeetal.,2004).
Thepresenceofunspecifiedmicroorganismsfromtraditionalleaven
complicatesthecontrolofthefermentationprocessandyieldsproducts
ofvariablequality.Theuseofstarterculturesseemstobeagood
methodtoreduceorganolepticvariationsandtoreducetheriskof
contaminationwithpathogenicorganisms.Thisapproachwouldalso
increasethechancesofpreservingoftraditionalsorghumbeer,givingit
alongershelflife.Theexistingvariationsintheproductionprocesses
ofAfricantraditionalsorghumbeercouldbeincorporatedintothe
developmentofalargevarietyofsorghumbeersinAfrica.
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