Monosaccharides

Monosaccharides are simple sugars and there are many different kinds with each sugar molecule containing 3, 4, 5, or 6 carbon atoms with each being named after these number of carbon atoms eg. pentose = 5, hexose = 6. The two main sugars we are concerned with namely glucose and fructose are hexose monosaccharides. Glucose is the sugar that provides the sugar for the human body. Fructose as well as being a component of sucrose is found in many different kinds of fruit and is the principle one in honey. Fructose is also sometimes known as levulose.

Glucose is the main common simple sugar and is a part of many different disaccharides and polysaccharides eg. corn starch (most common source). Disaccharides are composed of 2 simple sugars combined together which can either be similar or dissimilar sugars eg. Maltose = 2 glucose molecules (dimer or double molecule of glucose), sugar or sucrose = 1 glucose + 1 fructose molecule. Normally disaccharide sugars must be hydrolyzed and split into their simple sugar components before they can be fermented. In the case of sucrose (sugar) they are split into equal numbers of glucose and fructose molecules. Glucose has a Relative Sweetness level of 70 while fructose has double that level at 140. By switching a certain amount of glucose for sucrose it can be seen that it is relatively easy to adjust the Relative Sweetness level before one starts fermentation. Just try switching a certain amount of the glucose for the sugar say 20 to 25% initially (probably kg for kg) and go from there. You should end up with a less sweet alcohol.


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