re: meat substitutes & nutrients (B12) 

@phyrry @InvaderXan Ah, thanks! Looks like it's specifically the cyanobacteria source that's considered useless for B12, but that Porphyra seaweed is a good plant source. Very cool!

The Nout & Rombouts paper, however, doesn't seem to indicate that tempeh is a good source of B12: sci-hub.tw/10.1111/j.1365-2672 It cites some other papers that show that some tempeh contains live bacteria that *can* produce B12, but that's different from commercial tempeh being a good source.

re: meat substitutes & nutrients (B12) 

@phyrry @InvaderXan In particular, I suspect that industrially produced tempeh doesn't have any B12, but that some random-ass small-time producer making tempeh in unsanitary conditions out in the country has a better chance of it, because they have a better chance of accidentally inoculating the tempeh with the fecal bacteria that produce B12. That's what I assume was detected in the referenced Okada et al. 1985a.

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re: meat substitutes & nutrients (B12) 

@varx @phyrry
East Asian fermentation mixtures typically use a combination of fungal and bacterial components which work synergistically. Similar examples include miso and sake. I'm unsure where your bizarre assumptions about fecal bacteria come from.

re: meat substitutes & nutrients (B12) 

@InvaderXan @phyrry Here's where I was coming from:

1) Animals generally get their B12 from gut bacteria, either from fermentation "forward" enough in the GI tract (e.g. cows), by eating their own poop (rabbit), or eating other animals (us)

2) There's at least some evidence in humans of dietary B12 coming from contamination. I can dig up this reference later.

3) That section is called "Effects of Enterobacteriaceae"—many of these are enteric (gut) bacteria.

re: meat substitutes & nutrients (B12) 

@InvaderXan @phyrry So I may have made too far of a leap there, but it's not bizarre—there's precedent for the idea in the literature.

(Also, I spot-checked a few of the species named, and they were gut flora.)

re: meat substitutes & nutrients (B12) 

@InvaderXan @phyrry I don't know a whole lot about tempeh production, other than that the stuff at the grocery store uses Rhizopus oligosporus and probably not anything else.

If you can get tempeh in other places that has B12 producing bacteria added in, that's great!
(No guarantee that that's true bioavailable B12, although it probably is.) But it doesn't mean that tempeh, in general, is a good B12 source (especially when speaking to a Western audience.)

re: meat substitutes & nutrients (B12) 

@InvaderXan @phyrry More references here on Indonesian vs. US tempeh, B12, and K. pneumoniae: veganhealth.org/vitamin-b12-pl

re: meat substitutes & nutrients (B12) 

@varx @phyrry
Lactobacillus sp. is also gut flora, and is used to make cheese, beer, and sauerkraut, among other things. I’ve never heard anyone assume that European foods are contaminated with fecal bacteria based on such flimsy evidence, however.

re: meat substitutes & nutrients (B12) 

@InvaderXan I think you're focusing way too hard on this word "contamination". I don't mean it in a bad way. Maybe it would be better if I said "wild bacteria and yeast", like people talk about with sourdough or sauerkraut, where the bacteria on the maker's hands can play a positive role in the culture.

Point is, I don't think the cultures involved in supermarket tempeh in the US are gonna do the job.

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