Our team's basic implementation is to make a multifunctional yeast that combines pectinase and yeast. We can cut the cost by using multifunctional yeast by only purchasing for multifunctional yeast instead of both saccharomyces cerevisiae and pectinase.
Through online research, we found that wastewater containing pectin could block pipes and be degraded before discharging. This requires chateau to add pectinase to wastewater and could be costly.
We carried out our questionnaire initially to investigate the fruit wine market. The questions aim at the frequency of drinking, types of alcohol interviewees prefer their views on the health benefits of fruit wine. Through cross analyzing more than one thousand collected questionnaires, we discovered that fruit wine has a group of loyal customers that drink it more than three times a week. These loyal customers viewed fruit wine as a drink that is beneficial for their health. We hope our product can improve the quality and reduce the price of fruit wine, finally benefiting both chateau and fruit wine lovers.
We have also contacted gene-editing experts and chateau owners as possible stakeholders. Gene-editing expert Yibei Xiao informed us of the advantages of the CRISPR technique and encouraged us to explore more of CRISPR. In conclusion, previous researches inspired us two new research directions:
Extend the experiment to combine lysozyme with yeast to shorten the brewing time and extend the expiration date after unsealing.
Use multifunctional yeast to decompose pectin to dispose of wastewater.
However, the marketing of our products has many problems too.
First, customers always hold misunderstandings about gene-editing. During our research, we discovered that many people regard gene-editing techniques as GMO（genetically modified organisms）. However, there is a much more difference between these notions. Even when we try to tell the interviewee that it is different when we talk about utilizing gene-editing techniques as a tool or as GMO, they still show their resistance to our project.
Most people are afraid of being transgenic. They think it is a new thing. It is harmful to people's health.
For instance, Amy's father is afraid of GMO. He always posts negative comments on the breakthrough of GMO and tells the family not to buy any gene-modified related products. Nevertheless, they are buying gene-modified soybeans every day. He theoretically rejects every outcome, but he did not know that 99% of the soybeans in the market are genetically modified. Unfortunately, our customers seldom get into the truth. They think gene-editing technology is still far from us. They haven't realized that gene-editing technology has already made its entrance into the daily life of human beings. Our project is devoted to using the technology of "gene editing" in the process rather than GMO. Citizens, however, are confused about these two concepts. Thus, they are likely to regard all related gene products as GMO. People's confusion and unfamiliarity will build an unfathomable gulf at the root of accepting our project and the gene-editing techniques we applied.
Second, our project is facing hidden commercial dangers as a result of the use of gene-related products. Designs from our project will be delivered to companies that produce gene-modified products. Due to the resistance of gene-modified products, citizens will hold negative perspectives toward any other products of the companies published.
There is a high probability that our product will also end up being produced by a biotech company. And once that biotech company had made a GMO product, our product would also be considered a GMO product and not a helpful tool.
To know chateau's opinion on our product, we contacted a red wine franchisee and a chateau owner in Austria.
In the email, we asked franchisee Peter, and chateau owner Helmut Unfried some basic questions about alcoholic beverage making, yeast, and pectin, and then he gave us useful answers.
We are concerned about whether the degradation of pectin in wastewater is difficult and expensive and whether reducing pectin in wine is essential. In addition, we asked about some advances in winemaking and some commercial aspects of alcoholic beverages.
Unfried says there are more than 500 types globally, and each winemaker has a particular kind of yeast to make a specific type of wine. Therefore, yeast plays a crucial role in winemaking, and pectin only plays a vital role in sugar conversion, so its importance is minimal.
According to his reply, the annual demand for brewer's yeast depends on different geographical areas and different ages. For instance, China buys wine from 1–10,000 euros per bottle, and the investment also depends on whether it is table or quality. Moreover, wine is not only red and white, not only nutritious but also a culture, a drink that has accompanied humans for 50,000 years. And is a highly complex product from production, quality to distribution.
Screenshot of our email to Peter.