Forget artificial ingredients and preservatives — could mushroom fermentation be the key to better-tasting chocolate and coffee?

This idea comes from Brooks Kelly, PhD, Penn State University researcher and chief science officer of MycoTechnology, who employs an all-natural fermentation process using mushrooms to remove bitter and acidic qualities from food ingredients. By fermenting the ingredients with certain strains of mushrooms, sugar, moisture and oxygen are removed in exchange for beta-glucans, which results in a sweeter, full-bodied and less acidic product.

We know that consuming raw cacao is much healthier than pumping dark chocolate with milk and soy letchitin. However, with the insane amount of milk chocolate products on the market, no wonder so many people like the less-bitter taste of milk chocolate over its more natural, original dark state. Think about the possibility of MycoTechnology’s work; more people could kick those unhealthy, added flavor, and sugar-ridden milk chocolate candies goodbye and actually enjoy a less-bitter taste of natural, sweet chocolate.

“We believe this mushroom that we have for creating sweetness can create another alternative to sugar,” said MycoTechnology CEO Alan Hahn to FoodNavigator-USA.

MycoTechnology Inc. claims it will revolutionize the coffee and chocolate markets and plans to expand into myceliated vanilla, grains, and cereals.

What do you think? Could this technology make natural food taste better to the average consumer?