Aspergillus niger is used to produce citric acid and ferment vinegar. Rhizopus is used to make sweet rice wine and tempeh. Aspergillus oryzae is used in the creation of soy sauce. Penicillium was used to change the world after bacteriologist Dr. Alexander Fleming discovered that its mold juice had “antibacterial” properties, leading to the discovery of penicillin in 1928. Penicillium also ripens and flavors cheese.
See all four of these molds as they change textures, shapes, and colors. This Beauty of Science time-lapse film, The Rise of Molds, captures their growth up close. The footage is set to an epic soundtrack.