Sugar Tech

, Volume 21, Issue 6, pp 966–975 | Cite as

Production and Characterization of a New Sweet Sorghum Distilled Beverage

  • Ana Cláudia Alencar Lopes
  • Zlatina Genisheva
  • José Airton Rodrigues Nunes
  • Whasley Ferreira DuarteEmail author
Research Article


Sweet sorghum is a culture that has received increasing attention in the last years. In many countries, genetic breeding programs have been developed seeking increases in the production of juice and sugars for alcoholic fermentation. In our study, S. cerevisiae and M. caribbica were evaluated to produce a distilled beverage from sweet sorghum, which was chemically and sensorially characterized. Both inocula and genotype BRS 506 were selected to produce the sweet sorghum spirit due to their high sugar conversion, ethanol yield, efficiency and productivity. The produced novel sorghum spirit was chemically and sensorially characterized. Fifty-five volatile compounds were identified by GC–MS, most of them belonging to the groups of esters and higher alcohols, which are desirable due to their fruity aromatic descriptors in distilled beverages. The sweet sorghum spirit produced with S. cerevisiae presented more volatile acids (9431.86 µg/L), aldehydes (331.93 µg/L) and terpenes (4881 µg/L). In contrast, the spirit produced with mixed inoculum showed 58,021.27 µg/L of esters and 9717.07 µg/L of higher alcohols. The mixed inoculum improved the production of desirable volatile compounds, resulting in slightly greater acceptance in the sensorial analysis with a higher index of purchase intention. Based on our results, the sweet sorghum proved to be a good substrate for alcoholic fermentation to produce a spirit, which may represent an interesting alternative in the market of distilled beverages.


Sorghum bicolor Volatile compounds Distilled beverage Meyerozyma caribbica Non-Saccharomyces 



This study was financed in part by the Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior—Brasil (CAPES)—Finance Code 001. The authors also would like to thank Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico do Brasil (CNPq) and Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa de MG (FAPEMIG) for financial support.

Author’s Contributions

Ana Cláudia Alencar Lopes conducted the planning, laboratory experiments, and organization of data and writing under the supervision and guidance of Whasley Ferreira Duarte. Jose Airton carried out the planting and harvesting of all sweet sorghum used in the study. Zlatina Genisheva assisted in the writing and revision of the final draft.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Society for Sugar Research & Promotion 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of BiologyFederal University of Lavras (UFLA)LavrasBrazil
  2. 2.CEB – Centre of Biological EngineeringUniversity of MinhoBragaPortugal

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