Author Topic: Yeast Management  (Read 8281 times)

Offline TAHammerton

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Yeast Management
« on: December 14, 2015, 09:58:16 PM »
I am looking for any advice on yeast management for a 10 barrel system. The brewer has delegated the task to me as I have more experience handling and re-using yeast (in a home brewing environment).

On our 1 barrel system I am basically using homebrew techniques using glass mason jars and cooled boiled water to rinse the yeast. This has worked very well and we have been harvesting nice clean yeast for re-pitching. However things are going to be different when we start brewing on the 10 barrel system early next year. We hope to manage 3 strains of yeast primarily - Cal Ale, London Ale and a Belgian strain. The current plan is to store the yeast in 2.5 gallon Corny kegs and inject the yeast with co2 pressure into the conicals. The part I am unsure about is how best to select and collect the good yeast when transferring from one metal container to another. Should I keep the washing step using glass containers to visually sort the yeast, or is it best to reduce contact to minimize possibility of contamination but pitch proportionally more non-yeast and non-viable yeast?

Any advice welcome.
In bottles: none
In keg: Asaph IPA
In process: Farmhouse Saison, Supermarine Kentish Ale

Offline Oginme

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Re: Yeast Management
« Reply #1 on: December 15, 2015, 05:54:33 AM »
Just from observations during brewery tours, I noticed that Harpoon (VT) uses what looked to be 10 to 15 gallon conicals for storing and moving yeast around.  Another brewery in the northeast, Smuttynose (NH) was using metal conicals as well.  At the Maine Brewing Company, I saw 5-gal pails (sealed) marked as yeast.

Food for thought.
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Offline brewfun

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Re: Yeast Management
« Reply #2 on: December 15, 2015, 08:35:33 AM »
I am looking for any advice on yeast management for a 10 barrel system.
...Any advice welcome.

Welcome to the big leagues.

Careers are made on this topic. This is more complex than can be contained in a forum post.

The major considerations are:
1) Fermentation conditions
2) Harvest timing
3) Storage needs (aka repitch frequency)
4) Generations required for cost control

Instead of a corny, I'd just use a Sankey sixtel. It's easier to clean and will stay 100% purged. You can easily modify one with sanitary ferrules and use valves. Bigtime time saver and frustration eliminator because it's aseptic harvest and pitch.

Yeast harvest is going to be totally dependent on your brewery methods and schedule. FWIW, if you're, aseptic, going to only 10 generations and you're not doing a full line of uber hopped styles, you can probably skip the yeast washing. Just plate out samples for QA.

My method of harvest is to drop trub starting on day 4. Then harvest the creamy slurry anytime between day 6 and whenever I may add anything (like dry hop or oak), as long as it's within 3 (occasionally 4) days of repitching. Worst case, I have to filter on a Thursday before a 3 day weekend, and can't refill Fermenter B until next Tuesday. I'll harvest Fermenter A on Friday, making it 4 days out of commission. It's rare, but planned. YMMV.


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Offline gevans

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Re: Yeast Management
« Reply #3 on: December 25, 2015, 10:29:43 AM »
I purchased a couple of yeast brinks from GW Kent.  They are bare bones models and you need to purchase a small relief valve, gauge, T and whatever CO2 QD's you are using.
The only thing it is missing from the Sabco high dollar version is the stir paddle.  I just shake it around a bit to degas the yeast and keep it mixed.

I dump the trub until I get clean yeast from a low hoped beer, like a summer wheat, then harvest after I've cold crashed.  I usually get 100# of really clean yeast at a 55%+ yeast slurry, as we only harvest the full creamy yeast and very little beer.  The yeast is transferred directly from the sanitized port on the fermenter, through a short hose, site glass, into the brink.  Use a very low CO2 transfer rate of 2-4 PSI to keep from blowing a hole in the center of the yeast.

I re-pitch at a rate of 2lbs, (little less than 1 liter) of yeast per barrel.

Wyeast has a good article on harvesting and re-pitching of yeast and have found their biologists very easy to work with here.  https://www.wyeastlab.com/com-yeast-harvest.cfm
GW Kent keg:  http://www.gwkent.com/keg-for-yeast-propagation.html

As with everything ensure quality yeast in a sterile to super sanitized environment and keep the air off it, light, (less than 2 PSI)  CO2 pressure in the yeast brink at all times and keep it COLD until ready to use.

Cheers

Gary - Head Brewer - Trail Point Brewing Company

Offline barleyfreak

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Re: Yeast Management
« Reply #4 on: August 07, 2016, 01:08:12 PM »
I purchased a couple of yeast brinks from GW Kent.  They are bare bones models and you need to purchase a small relief valve, gauge, T and whatever CO2 QD's you are using.
Cheers

Gary - Head Brewer - Trail Point Brewing Company

NOt sure if you'll see this Gary, but can you tell me what type (and where found) of relief valve you got?  I just bought two of the GW Kent brinks for my 7 bbl brewery and am trying to figure out how to attach a relief valve to the 1.5" TC top port.  Been thinking of rigging an airlock but thought there must be a better way.  Thanks, Dave

 

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