Over 125 species of this stuff turns ordinary dairy, vegetables, bread dough and mashed-up beer juice into the cheese, pickles, sourdough and beer we depend on to get us through lunch hour today. 

Lactobacillus is a type of bacteria that causes either decomposition or fermentation to occur — it depends entirely on the environment. By removing the oxygen, for example, by sealing a jar, the option for organic material to rot into not-kimchi turns into the perfect opportunity to ferment into the good stuff.

Use today’s Word of the Day: Weird or Good: Kimchi