Black Bread Mold

Black Bread Mold

One of the most common type of mold seen around the world is the bread mold. It can be whitish, greenish or blackish in color. Here are various questions asked regarding black bread mold and their answers.
BiologyWise Staff
There are many types of mold. Mold is a type of fungi. Similarly, mushrooms, mildew, and yeast are also fungi. These can be found indoors or outdoors. They come in different shapes, sizes and colors. Mold basically needs water and food, and it can grow anywhere. However, certain condition tend to favor the growth of molds. Some types of mold are toxic, and consuming them can make you sick. There are many types of mold and one of the common one is bread mold. One can observe white, green or black colored growth on spoiled food or bread.

Black Bread Mold Facts

What its Scientific Name?
The scientific name for black bread mold is Rhizopus stolonifer. It is also referred as R. stolonifer.

What is it?
This mold is a common type of fungus which tends to grow on bread. It uses nutrients in the bread for its growth, and can reproduce by asexual or sexual reproduction method. This mold is used in the manufacturing of alcohol and many organic acids.

On What all does it Grow?
It can grow on different types of breads and on soft fruits like bananas, strawberries, apples and grapes. This mold spores are airborne and so it can spread very easily.

What Conditions Favor the Growth of Bread Mold?
Bread mold requires food and water to grow. So, humidity from environment and nutrients present in bread and soft fruits make a favorable environment for the black bread mold. However, it grows fast when temperature is between 15 to 20 degrees Celsius.

How does it Grow?
As mentioned above black bread mold grows by sexual and asexual production. Here is the life cycle of this mold explained.
  • Black speckles of this fungus are produced on bread by asexual reproduction. These small speckles are called sporangia.
  • This mold consist of filaments which are called hyphae. The hyphae enters the bread and uses the nutrients from it.
  • The speckles produced by asexual reproduction develop at the tops another hyphae which is stalk like in appearance.
  • These spores on top of the hyphae then travel using air as a medium.
  • These spores will land on another food item, and there again will produce more fungus by asexual reproduction.
  • Black bread mold can also reproduce using sexual production. Also, this mold has two mating types referred as '+' and '-'.
  • When pheromones are released by these two types, they trigger the hyphae to grow sideways so that these two types can meet.
  • This leads to the growth of new structures.
How to Grow it?
To grow this mold, slightly moisten a slice of bread and make it touch the floor or a table top. Then leave it in a closed container. Keep the container in a warm place for two to three days. You can also use a zip pouch bag with a little opening if you can't find a container. After three days you will see that there will be green, white and black spots showing the bread mold growth.

How to Prevent its Growth?
To prevent its growth, the best way is to consume food items quickly, which tend to get fungal growth. Within a day or two consume these food items. However, if you can't do this. Then ensure that you store these items in refrigerator. Storing food at a low temperature, will help to preserve it for few more days.

I hope the article cleared your doubts on black bread mold. So, keep your soft fruits and bread items safe in a refrigerator or consume them quickly, to prevent them from getting spoiled by mold growth.