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Thread: HopAid

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Location
    Amsterdam, The Netherlands
    Posts
    7

    HopAid

    Hi there,

    Anyone familiar with using Barth-Haas's HopAid? I'm looking for a solution to our beer loss during fermentation - we usually find a whole lot of beer out of the blow off and on the floor the next day - and this stuff seems perfect, on paper. They recommend using 5-50 g/hl, which to me seems quite a wide range.

    Anyone want to share their experiences with it?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Cincinnati, OH
    Posts
    423
    Never found the need for things like this before. Just fill and aerate appropriately.

    Are your tanks undersized? I would recommend at least 20-25% headspace on top of your liquid volume in the fermenter. You should fill to the appropriate level so that you do not lose significant amounts of liquid in blow-off. I have had this discussion with many owners. Trying squeeze every drop can actually lead to less collection, or less quality if you are not careful.

    Additionally, over aerating can induce more blow-off and drive excess production of yeast. You may consider backing down your aeration to achieve a steady but not overly active fermentation. You will want to balance with yeast production so you can harvest as needed. I would skip anything that isn't designed to actually make your product better. Just my $0.02

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Location
    Amsterdam, The Netherlands
    Posts
    7
    Thank you for your cents UnFermentable,

    Things are exactly as you say: we do fill our CCT's with too little headspace left ánd we do over aerate 'just to be sure'. The last point is actually something we should work on, so thanks for that input.

    The argument that antifoam products are not designed to make the beer better is something I don't agree with though. Reading up about it, it does seem to be able to improve head retention and increase bitterness yield, on top of an increase in volume. It seems to be something worth trying without any (apparent) downsides.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Cincinnati, OH
    Posts
    423
    Quote Originally Posted by Allard View Post
    The argument that antifoam products are not designed to make the beer better is something I don't agree with though. Reading up about it, it does seem to be able to improve head retention and increase bitterness yield, on top of an increase in volume. It seems to be something worth trying without any (apparent) downsides.
    If you have data or links suggesting this I would be happy to be convinced, however it is my experience that these products do not add anything to benefit the quality of product, they are only processing aids. I have used them in production facilities, but have phased them out. It would be a cost-benefit analysis on the cost of the antifoam vs extra return on yield to justify it my mind. If I don't over-fill and aerate appropriately, then I achieve the same results without the cost (or additive).

    The volume increase would only be due to not blowing-off volume - which is fixed by not over-filling. In fact, you might see a higher volume collection if you do not over produce yeast. Less yeast in the cone = more beer collected. I have not heard or read about bittering effects myself. I would seriously question it improving head retention as it specifically references "high levels of foam stabilizing substances...may require higher dosing rates". This sounds like it works against foam stabilizing compounds (my experience).

    It is absolutely worth trying if you think you may benefit from it. I am simply stating there are more "organic" ways to achieve similar benefits. Some people use this in the kettle to prevent boil-overs. I have not found it necessary here either, but YMMV. Some customers will care about beer additives. It says "most" will be adsorbed by the yeast, and that the rest "may be removed by filtration". So if you aren't filtering your beer, you will be drinking this additive. Now, that doesn't particularly bother me, but - glyphosate in your beer (hysteria)!

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