Interestingly, there is not much literature available about Lactobacillus acetotolerans. There are publications which proof L. acetotolerans as one of the dominant lactic acid bacteria species in traditional fermentations, e.g. liquor from fermented grains (Luzhou-flavor liquor, more than 50% alcohol) as well as in the natural fermentations of sourdough (Mantou) and Sichuan pickles, all in China, in a Bamboo shoot fermentation in north-east India, in a traditionally fermented fish and rice dish (Narezushi) in Japan, and as a contaminant of yeast used for the production of in a Brazilian liquor (Cachaça).
The species Lactobacillus acetotolerans usually only is identified as part of the microflora of quite different fermentation processes if the analysis is based on cultivation independent methods. It seems that the detection of L. acetotolerans is mostly failing in those common analyses methods which need bacterial proliferation before the bacteria from a sample are identified.
This observation supports our finding that the sampling and sample processing are the major challenges for the detection of L. acetotolerans.
To detect Lactobacillus acetotolerans, it essential to work in a low oxygen atmosphere from the beginning, which includes the sampling itself. The easiest way to analyze liquids for anaerobes is by direct sampling into an incubation bottle or tube prefilled with liquid enrichment medium, filling the vessel up to the brim with liquid sample. Besides, this Lactobacillus species is very slow in growing. Often it takes 2-3 weeks until L. acetotolerans becomes visible in enrichments, and then often it forms only a small flake of haze in the bottom of the tube (refer to picture, right tube: L. acetotolerans in FastOrange B® Tube after 10 days incubation).
When using swab samples, always keep in mind that a dry cotton or sponge is full of air which means it is full of oxygen. Therefore, it is absolutely essential to use wet swabs only for anaerobic sampling, and to immerse the swab immediately into a liquid culture medium.
You find our proposed Best Practice method for the detection of anaerobic beer spoilers here.