Day 218

Instead of a Microbiology Lab today, we had a lecture about cleaning: manual cleaning (a stiff-bristled brush and a lot of elbow grease) versus auto-cleaning (press a switch).

For manual cleaning, there are various chemicals to help you, including foam cleaners, very helpful for cleaning the outside of tanks and vats–the foam clings to the surface, giving the cleaning agents more time to work. And there’s always the tried and true pressure washer, good for getting that black mold off the floor.

Then there’s Clean Out of Place (C.O.P.)–take the thing apart and put all the parts into a big washing machine.

Of course, most familiar in breweries is Clean In Place (C.I.P.)–the equipment is washed where it stands. This usually involves spray balls inside the equipment that spray water and chemicals over the inside surfaces. There are a lot of considerations here, including placement of the spray balls so that they don’t interfere with each other while still reaching all surfaces. And who knew a simple spray ball could be so expensive–apparently the type that rotate as they spray cost a couple of grand. Wow, my decorative lawn sprinkler with the little frog that turns round and round cost $29.99 at Canadian Tire.

In Packaging, Doug Pengelly began with a comparison of the pros and cons of beer containers: returnable bottles, non-returnable bottles (“one-way glass”), cans and PET plastic bottles. For instance, returnable bottles have the advantage of being thicker, and therefore more durable than non-returnable bottles; however, they are also heavier. Cans have the advantage of being lighter than glass, with a larger space for labelling; but the manufacture of aluminum has a larger ecological footprint than glass, and the minimum number you have to order would fill a large semi.

Throw in a couple of hours of review and that was all for Packaging (except for the exam next week.)



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2 Comments on “Day 218”

  1. I see you and I like posting our latest blog posts around the same time at night – just put mine up!

    Very interesting topic, both on cleaning and packaging. It’s interesting to see the similarities – and differences – between the beer and wine industries. I’d love to chat next time we get together about packaging – with wine, you also need to look at what kind of wine goes in what kind of bottle (chardonnay should go in a much different bottle than riesling, for example).

    • Alan Brown Says:

      The type of container for beer does not vary from style to style, but there are common needs for all beer: imperviousness to light (a reaction of UV light with a side chain of iso-alpha acids in the presence of sulphur compounds such as riboflavin will cause skunky “lightstruck” flavours) and a complete lack of oxygen. This can lead to marketing triumphing over the needs of the beer–clear glass and green glass, while looking very stylish, provide no protection from UV light.

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