The ever-evolving brewing industry is going through an exciting period of change. With established markets buoyed by the craft revolution, the future of brewing is looking increasingly optimistic. However, as these positive trends are driving opportunities for brewers, consistent production of quality beer is now an absolute requirement in order to remain viable and sustainable.
The single biggest threat to beer quality is microbial contamination which can lead to off-flavours in the beer once packaged. Despite containing little oxygen, alcohol and hops, certain bacterial species love beer just as much the modern, sophisticated beer drinker and can quickly cause off-flavours if not controlled properly.
Controlling microbial contamination in beer
Traditionally, craft brewers have relied upon good hygiene to control microbial contamination, however for brewers wishing to expand their business and establish their brands outside of the immediate geographical market, then reliance upon good hygiene alone is risky, and not in line with the expectations of distribution and retail partners.
If beer is to remain stable for more than a few days once packaged, microbial threats need to be understood and eliminated completely. To consistently produce quality packaged beer, with a stable flavour profile and long shelf-life, brewers should operate in accordance with an auditable quality control system based upon the principles of HACCP. As such, brewers are required to demonstrate they have a process to control microbial stability – typically pasteurisation or sterile filtration.
Optimizing microbial stabilization
Through recent developments in membrane filtration technology, sterile filtration is now the optimum process to control microbiological stability, protecting beer quality at the lowest operational cost. Sterile filtration carries many advantages over traditional pasteurisation techniques, including lower capital cost, lower running costs and better protection of beer flavour and shelf-life.
The new BEVPOR BR sterile filter range allows brewers to significantly reduce the cost of microbial stabilization, while protecting the sensory appeal of beer.
This is achieved by combining a unique, optimized PES (polyethersulphone) membrane which has been validated to retain key spoilage organisms, while offering the longest service life and therefore the most efficient cost of operation. In addition, the unique construction of the BEVPOR BR filters allows easy integrity testing as the cartridge is entirely hydrophilic and wets quickly and easily.
The combination of microbial retention, long lifetime and ease of integrity testing is unique to the performance of BEVPOR BR filters.
Meet the BEVPOR BR development team in this video:
This post was contributed by Daniel Vecsey, market development manager, Parker Bioscience Division, United Kingdom.
Parker Bioscience Division offers filtration solutions to protect the quality and taste of beverage products. By working with our application experts, manufacturers can develop a tailored solution to ensure their beverage is free from contamination, full of flavour and visibly clear.