Fermented foods constitute hubs of microbial consortia differentially affecting nutritional and organoleptic properties, quality, and safety. Here we show the origin source of fermentative microbes and fermentation dynamics of kimchi. We partitioned microbiota by raw ingredient (kimchi cabbage, garlic, ginger, and red pepper) to render kimchi fermented by each source-originated microbe pool and applied multi-omics (metataxonomics and metabolomics), bacterial viability, and physiochemical analyses to longitudinally collected samples. Only kimchi cabbage- and garlic-derived microbial inoculums yielded successful kimchi fermentations. The dominant fermentative microbial taxa and subsequent metabolic outputs differed by raw ingredient type: the genus Leuconostoc, Weissella, and Lactobacillus for all non-sterilized ingredients, garlic, and kimchi cabbage, respectively. Gnotobiotic kimchi inoculated by mono-, di-, and tri- isolated fermentative microbe combinations further revealed W. koreensis-mediated reversible microbial metabolic outputs. The results suggest that the raw ingredient microbial habitat niches selectively affect microbial community assembly patterns and processes during kimchi fermentation.
- Lactic acid bacteria
- Microbial community assembly