The Sourdough Project Yeast Results are Here!

The Sourdough Project has some exciting updates to share today! Here is your chance to see some of the data for your individual sourdough starter, data on some of the more common species present in your starter. On the yeast results map (found here) you will find individual points on the maps near to where you live. The points are labeled with your sample number (for which you can search). The points don’t exactly match the location of your home so as to preserve the anonymity of your starter. But wait, don’t look yet. Before you look, there are some caveats. The first caveat is that while we succeeded in identifying the microbes from all of the starters, we weren’t able to succeed with a small handful. The second is that some of the starters that arrived in our mailbox did so without much (or even any) identifying information. For these reasons, you might not find your starter. If you don’t, we are sorry. It may still appear (we are trying a few more tricks on those that didn’t fully work) but it may not.

The biggest caveat is that while what we can tell you now is which yeast species were in your starter, that won’t yet mean too much. Our next step is to tell the stories of the most common microbes so that you know what it means to have, for example, Kazachstania in your starter. This will take us a little time. We’ll send out another announcement when we are done.

Then there is the issue of what explains the great diversity one sees from starter to starter. We don’t know yet. We could have waited to share your results until we had a better sense, but we know you want to know what lives in your starter now, even before we have a chance.

Here then is the map of the wild life of your bread. Enjoy. Look at your starter. Look at other peoples’ starters. See if you can figure out what the patterns are before we do. And if you do, if you think you have it sorted out, let us know on Facebook where other people can see your thoughts too.

Finally, if you have ideas about exciting next steps, let us know by commenting here. We are always game for a new project. IF you have questions about your individual starter, wait a little. We’ll be adding more to these maps and sending more updates.

Thank you for joining us in this great food mystery. We are having a lot of fun and hope you are too.

By |2017-10-17T14:51:12+00:00October 17th, 2017|

About the Author:

Rob Dunn
Rob Dunn is a biologist and writer in the Department of Applied Ecology at North Carolina State University. Central to all of his work is the sense that big discoveries lurk not only in faraway tropical forests, but also in our backyards and even bedrooms. The unknown is large and wonderful and Dunn and his collaborators, students, and postdocs love to spend their days in it.

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