Last updated 14 Aug 2014

Healthy Organic Brown Rice Vinegar

Vinegar is said to be the first seasoning ever created by man and is believed to have been in existence as long as salt. The origin of the word vinegar is "vin aigre", meaning sour wine. Vinegar is made through two fermentation processes. Firstly, alcohol is made from the natural fermentation of grain or fruit, and then, secondly, an ever present bacteria called Acetobacter aceti ferments the alcoholic substance into acetic acid through means of oxidization, thus creating vinegar. Therefore, wherever there is alcohol, there will always be vinegar.

There are many popular kinds of vinegar: rice vinegar from Japan, malt vinegar from England, and wine vinegar from France. Our supplier, MUSO produces superb slow-processed vinegar made only from high quality ingredients that are grown organically. The simple sour tang and aroma of their vinegar will accentuate any dish of your choice. Vinegar helps improve our lives and health in many ways, and therefore, MUSO is proud to supply their top quality vinegar to the entire world.

Vinegar is believed to have first been made by the Babylonians in 5000 BC. According to Old Testament records, however, the first written account of vinegar use was dated as far back as 1250 BC in Israel. In Japan, vinegar was introduced around the 7th century. Originally, rice vinegar was produced from a Japanese wine known as Sake. Large scale production of rice vinegar began in the 16th century.

The traditional manufacturing method involves brewing the vinegar for an entire year, a process which continued until the beginning of the 20th century, when synthetically produced vinegar began to appear on the Japanese market in 1915. With the invention of alcoholic vinegar and the scarcity of food at the time, genuine rice vinegar began to disappear. Finally, in 1942, the government began to regulate the use of rice in vinegar production and traditional Japanese vinegar was replaced entirely by alcoholic vinegar, synthetic vinegar, and vinegar lees.

After WWII, as the food situation improved, rice vinegar reentered the market. However, most rice vinegar during that period was made by mixing rice with sake lees or alcohol, and genuine rice vinegar has become a rare product. Synthetic vinegar became mainstream around the year 1969, but brewed vinegar has begun to regain popularity amongst many who seek higher quality products. Over 70% of the total vinegar produced today is brewed vinegar.

The first fermentation

Steamed rice, Koji and water are first combined. Over time, the glucose in the grain will begin to disintegrate, forming a mash known as saccharified moromi. A live enzyme called "shubo" is then added which converts the sugar into alcohol. This process takes one month to produce sake.

The second fermentation

Sake is then mixed with seed vinegar (rice vinegar with pure Acetobacter) and heated to grow the Acetobacter's membrane. Rice vinegar takes two weeks to complete its fermentation process.


The vinegar is then aged for one year.

Pasteurizing with heat

Vinegar is usually divided into several types according to the manufacturing process. Today, there are many kinds of vinegar on the market that are commercially produced by optimizing cost and production rate. Although they are known as "100% brewed vinegar," they mostly consist of alcoholic vinegar made using qualified brewage alcohol and sake lees.

Following the regulations established in 1970, the Japanese government permits the use of the term "rice vinegar" by the inclusion of more than 40g of sake lees per 1 liter of vinegar instead of rice, and allowed the use of qualified brewage alcohol. Synthetic vinegar is made by adding water, sugar, organic acid, seasonings and salt. Therefore, many of the commercially available rice vinegar differs from MUSO's rice vinegar which are brewed traditionally using only rice, Koji, and water.

In order to maintain our ideal health condition, it is important to maintain an alkaline blood condition. However, due to our modern lifestyles, there are many elements, such as stress, modern eating habits and a poor environment, which contribute to an acidic physical constitution. If our blood becomes too acidic, we will become susceptible to illness. Since acidic blood is very thick, it also makes it very difficult for the blood to circulate completely to our body's extremities, which may cause high blood pressure and increased cholesterol levels. Vinegar has a strong purifying effect on the blood, and it helps change our acidic blood to alkalized blood. It has also been scientifically proven to activate cell function and regulate blood flow in a process known as the "citric acid cycle".

The health benefits of consuming brown rice vinegar:

  • Recovering from tiredness. Vinegar has an abundance of organic acids which include citric acid, malic acid, acetic acid and succinic acid. These organic acids stimulate metabolism, which helps the body improve and maintain a healthy blood condition due to the citric acid cycle, which forms the basic structure for producing our necessary energy.
  • Strengthening bones. Vinegar stimulates the secretion of gastric acid, which helps absorb calcium. Vinegar also helps soften hard ingredients such as vegetables, fish, meat, etc., as well as bones and makes them more easily absorbed. You can use vinegar for boiling small fish, and its bones will become softer.
  • Keeps food fresh for a longer period of time. Vinegar has been used not only for taste but also for the sterilization of foods. Using vinegar for sushi rice, dressing, frying eggs, etc., will prolong their freshness during hot summer days. With vinegar's sterilizing effect, one can avoid catching cold by gargling their throats with vinegar water. Vinegar also helps prevents the growth of the ringworm virus, which makes it very effective against athlete's foot.
  • Prevention of stiff shoulders and lame hips. As the body moves, the citric acid cycle will be activated, and it will begin to dissipate organic acid. If there is a lack of organic acid in the body, the citric acid cycle will become less effective, and the body will begin to accumulate lactic acid and start to feel fatigued. Lactic acid can combine with proteins in the shoulder, which will make our shoulders stiff. Lactic acid can also accumulate in the hips, causing lame hips. Vinegar, however, will help the body to break down lactic acid into water and carbonated gas. Therefore, it is important that we include vinegar that contains lots of organic acids in our diet to help prevent stiff shoulders and lame hips.
  • Prevention of arteriosclerosis and heart problems. Taking vinegar helps purify blood and decrease low-density lipoprotein. Therefore, it is effective in preventing arteriosclerosis and heart issues.
  • Accelerates digestion and recovery from constipation. The smell, flavor, and components of vinegar will stimulate the nerves of your digestive organs, which helps enhance the digestion and absorption of foods, stimulates the intestines, cleanses the intestines, and aids recovery from constipation and hemorrhoids.

MUSO rice vinegar

MUSO's rice vinegar is produced in the pristine countryside of central Japan. Most commercial rice vinegar is made by pounding crushed rice, however, MUSO's Organic Brown Rice Vinegar, are made from whole organic brown rice, high quality natural water, and Koji, with no added alcohol or sugar, as is common with commercially produced vinegar.

MUSO's brown rice vinegar is still made using traditional manufacturing processes. Sake is first made from organically grown brown rice, and then fermented for a long time under strict quality control to create brown rice vinegar. MUSO's long brewed Brown Rice Vinegar contains about 90 organic components and amino acids, and it is characterized not only by its high nutritional value but also by its fruity aroma and lightly acidic flavor. Their generous use of Koji harmonizes a softer sweetness in the brown rice vinegar and keeps the acidity content at around 3%. The brown rice vinegar can be used for various dishes such as dressings, marinades, pickles, sushi rice, and more.

MUSO's Sweet Brown Rice Vinegar is made using glutinous brown rice, natural water, and Koji. It takes about 500 days to mature inside wooden kegs using traditional manufacturing methods that have been handed down for generations. MUSO's Sweet Brown Rice Vinegar is marketed as a healthy product because of its rich mineral content. It is generally used as cooking vinegar, but is also widely considered a healthy drink by itself.

MUSO’s organic brown rice vinegar is distributed in Malaysia by Woods Eco-cuisine Sdn Bhd and Unsui Macrobiotics.

Posted by June Ka Lim

Aug 2014