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And we worry about infection

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darrellm

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Channel surfing and the Hairy Bikers are in some commercial brewery, Manchester I think
  • They're open fermenting
  • They pull a sample of the fermenting beer to try, handling the vessel before pouring into glasses, then chuck the sampling vessel back in with no sanitsation
  • The brewery guy takes a gulp from his glass then chucks the remnants back in with the fermenting wort

And we worry about sanitising everything to avoid infections.
 

Rodcx500z

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Sometimes I take a sample out of my fv with no tap, I will grab a wine glass and without thinking just dunk it in but I don't chuck it back in, been lucky so far
 

terrym

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I think there are a lot of homebrewers who talk absolute b******s about infections. They have never had one but perpetuate one of homebrew's myths having read about them somewhere. Provide you sanitise your brewing kit you have to be extremely unlucky to get one, especially since airborne infections are kept at bay by sensible precautions like 'keeping the lid on'. If traditional commercial brewers had suffered from infections by carrying out practices as described in the OP they would have abandoned them a long time ago.
 

the baron

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Spot on Terry not saying its a urban myth but too many Nanny state people who sanitize beyond belief and its also driven by the main players who write the books many of us read as if they are gods?. Listen I have been brewing since the back end of the 70,s and I believe I have as much knowledge as them on the basics yes they can beat me on the chemistry side and technicalities but basic brewing No
 

Sadfield

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IIRC it was Robinson's in Stockport.

Probably worth noting that a bit of stray bacteria in 10,000L is probably less of an issue than in 20L, and they were probably tasting the beer at the tail end of fermentation where acidity and alcohol content would of mitigated any risk.

All beer is infected/contaminated unless you brew in a sterile environment. Even commercial yeast contains a percentage of bacteria.
 

foxbat

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IIRC it was Robinson's in Stockport.

Probably worth noting that a bit of stray bacteria in 10,000L is probably less of an issue than in 20L, and they were probably tasting the beer at the tail end of fermentation where acidity and alcohol content would of mitigated any risk.

All beer is infected/contaminated unless you brew in a sterile environment. Even commercial yeast contains a percentage of bacteria.
The chances of infection are an issue to the brewery. To me the issue is an employee thinking it's fine to wash out his mouth bacteria into a food product intended for sale to the public.
 

terrym

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I've been brewing for 50 odd years (with a few years break) and my original brewing hygiene standards were nowhere near what I do now. But even so I don't believe I have ever lost any beer due to an 'infection'. Perhaps I've been lucky.
So, hands up all those who take sensible, but not over-the-top, precautions about avoiding 'infections' but have had more than one 'infection' in their entire brewing career.
 

jjsh

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So, hands up all those who take sensible, but not over-the-top, precautions about avoiding 'infections' but have had more than one 'infection' in their entire brewing career.
Actually, thinking about it, I don't think I've ever had an infection in the fv. I've had the odd over carbed, probably infected, bottle, but that was from slack cleaning. Interesting point, Terry.
 

Clint

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I've had one very over carbed Cali common...a few of which are still in the naughty box a couple of years later...I must dig some out.
 

the baron

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I've never had one the nearest I came was doing full volume brews and my ph caused tannins to be extracted but never a infection
 

Clint

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Ah yes Tannins....where Indiana Jones found the Ark of the Covenant...it's great here you don't half get involved in some top flight educational topics!
 

Sadfield

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I've been brewing for 50 odd years (with a few years break) and my original brewing hygiene standards were nowhere near what I do now. But even so I don't believe I have ever lost any beer due to an 'infection'. Perhaps I've been lucky.
So, hands up all those who take sensible, but not over-the-top, precautions about avoiding 'infections' but have had more than one 'infection' in their entire brewing career.
Why so binary? Does a beer have to be lost to be infected? What about the massive grey area in between, the poor head retention, haze, sluggish, stalled fermentations, slight or unexpected off flavours? What difference does a million bacteria make compared to a billion?
 

Rodcx500z

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I have not lost a brew, I have had a few with off flavours but not enough to bin it, I just take a little care keep things clean but not over the top
 

Dutto

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I never bothered with sanitising anything (a good rinse would do) and then brewed 2 x 40 pints of vinegar back to back and gave up home-brewing for many years!

However, I visited a commercial brewery in Yorkshire where I saw lots of one-ton plastic containers of sanitising liquid and restarted brewing after deciding that sanitising was the way to go; and so far so good! athumb..

For me, the main joy of sanitising is that I know that a brew isn't going to "go off" for at least a year! As an example, I don't like stout very much but I brewed a batch for a mate nearly two years ago. My mate has been dead for over a year now (not from drinking the stout!) and I can still occasionally pull a pint in his memory 'cos it's still palatable. athumb..
 
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