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Thread: Pasteurization and small bottling line

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    173

    Pasteurization and small bottling line

    Curious what other small brewers are doing to their product when bottling on a small line. Are you using a flash pasteurizer, tunnel, or sterile filtration or nothing at all? I'm looking at a small line, something around 30-60 bpm and I have no idea what I want to do to preserve the beer. Initially leaning to flash pasteurizing. Any input is appreciated.

    Andrew
    Parish Brewing Co.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
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    Tadcaster, Yorkshire, UK
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    1,085
    My experience is definitely not with small breweries. However, assuming you are running at 50 bpm consistently and the bottles are .5 litres, then flow rate through the filler is only 15 hl / hr. I have my doubts that anyone will make a flash pasteuriser this small, certainly with decent temperature and flow control. The cost of a decent pasteuriser unit, assuming you can get one will be horrifically more expensive than sterile filtration.

    I suggest you stick with sterile filtration, so you will need to prefilter with KG, then to extend the life of the sterilising filter (0.45 micron absolute) you will want a 5 or possibly 1 micron trap before hand. You will probably only need about 4 x 10 inch cartridges for each filter cartridge housing, but check with a supplier such as Parker, Sartorious or Pall for exact details. You will need to allow for backflushing and steam sterilisation for hygiene and extended working life, but even so your costs should be far less than a flash pasteuriser

    Good luck

    Cheers
    dick

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    Cambridge, Ontario Canada
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    192
    I agree with Dick without question. A flash unit is only effective as your cleaning and sanitizing on anything downstream inc., pumps, lines, control valves, fill bowl, fill valves, crown shute, crown element (the worst offender), crowns, etc... If one is not clean, your pasteuriser ensures that you have killed the beer spoilers just prior to infecting with another beer spoiler.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
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    Fiji Islands
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    We are using a batch pasteurizer which keeps pace with a meheen filler. We lower the bottles on a basket into a large steel tub of water which is heated with steam to pasteurize.
    Jeremy

    Island Brewing Co.
    Fiji Islands
    www.isbrew.com

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    Cambridge, Ontario Canada
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brewdigger
    We are using a batch pasteurizer which keeps pace with a meheen filler. We lower the bottles on a basket into a large steel tub of water which is heated with steam to pasteurize.
    Any pictures?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
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    Fiji Islands
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    I'll take some pics when I'm back in Fiji next week but here are some photos from the manufacturer (Brewtique in Australia).

    We're using plastic pallet bins in place of the metal baskets as they were a lot cheaper so enables us to have some bins being loaded, some unloaded etc. Just built a steel frame for the bin to sit in and be hoisted into the pasteurizer.

    Its a more labour intensive than a tunnel pasteurizer would be but it appears to be very efficient steam wise, so with high gas prices here and low labour costs i'm not tempted to upgrade to a tunnel pasteurizer any time soon.
    Attached Images Attached Images    
    Jeremy

    Island Brewing Co.
    Fiji Islands
    www.isbrew.com

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Israel
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    105

    batch pasteurizing

    Hi Jeremy - just posted elsewhere and then saw your thread.

    Do you go directly from filler to past temp or do you have an interim stage (about 30 deg or so)?

    How many bottles do you do at a time and how big is your past tank? (how many liters of water relative to the number of bottles?)

    Do you have a separate tank for cooling down afterward?

    Did you guys build this yourselves or did someone fabricate for you?

    Your setup looks exactly like what I had in mind, right up to matching it with a Meheen - didn't realize that someone already built it!

    Cheers.

    David

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    155

    Flash vs Sterile

    I have used both of these methods to ensure package life in small operations. The difference comes down to pay me now or pay me later. The up front cost of a flash is very high, and the running cost of sterile filters is high.

    Starting out with a filtration system that consist of three levels including depth, surface, and membrane filtration is the best most small breweries can implement. As Dick said the value of this investment is dependent on your procedures. If your procedures are not good enough to do without this step than there is no value in buying the extra equipment.

    Graydon

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Fiji Islands
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    Hi David

    1. Direct from filler to past temp

    2. Approx 800 bottles at a time. We stack them in a pallet bin - 1.2 x 1 x .975 external with 780 ltr capacity. We have six of them so some being filled whilst one in the pasteurizer and some finished waiting to be labelled. The pallet bins fit pretty well inside the pasteurizer tub.

    3. No seperate tank for cooling down afterwards.

    4. We purchased ours off Brewtique. http://www.brewtique.com.au/
    As far as I am aware they are the only ones making batch pasteurizers.

    Works very well with the Meheen

    Jeremy
    Jeremy

    Island Brewing Co.
    Fiji Islands
    www.isbrew.com

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    177
    How many pasteurization units are you putting in?
    What is the beer temp. when you label the bottles?

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Israel
    Posts
    105
    Hi Jeremy -

    Some more questions (again) -

    I'm surprised you're not breaking bottles - going from filling temp directly to about 70 deg, I would imagine that the glass would pop under the stress of a 60 deg temp jump.

    What temp is your bath water? How much water do you use? (you said that the tank has a 780 liter capacity but you have to allow for the displacement of the beer). What past temp are you going for? How long does it take for bottles to get to past temp once you lower into the bath?

    I'm also surprised that you don't cool down afterward. I would imagine that the bottles sitting at such high temp for extended periods wouldn't be good for the beer.

    Sorry to pepper you with all these questions but I'm thrilled that someone's already doing this (hoists and all, judging from your pics)

    BTW, sent brewtique an email already - waiting to hear back. Can I ask you what the setup cost?

    Thanks again.

    David

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada
    Posts
    816
    Bath pasteurizers are not as uncommon as you might think.

    Check Accent Stainless

    Pax.

    Liam
    Liam McKenna
    www.yellowbellybrewery.com

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    155
    You can call Jeff Gunn at IDD

    http://www.iddeas.com/info.html

    He has built and installed many small flash pasteurizers. I have used his equipment and had no problems. I also enjoyed working with Jeff and his son.

    Good Luck
    Graydon

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    177
    Its hard to believe that plunging 35 degree f beer into 140-150 degree water does not break glass.
    I must say that not cooling the beer down after cooking it is a quality mistake. Why not use a total of 3 tanks? You could recirculate the first and last tanks. You'd be using the cold from the entering bottles to half ass cool the pasteurized bottles and you'd be using the heat from pasteurized bottles to half ass preheat the beer before it goes into the hot tank

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