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Consequences of failure

The consequences of a failure in the yeast supply process can be dramatic. Introduction of contaminated yeast or - far, far worse - the wrong strain can slowly but surely cause accumulated havoc. Scale- up through propagation and subsequent pitching into one fermenter and then two fermenters and beyond can quickly exacerbate a problem. In terms of threat, contamination of the supplied yeast may or may not be an issue depending on the dominance of any contaminants. Bacterial contaminants should hopefully be flagged through routine quality testing. However, from experience, the supply of the wrong yeast results in a much greater challenge to detect. The unfortunate introduction - via a failing yeast supply process - of a phenolic yeast into a major lager brewery caused huge issues that were difficult to manage through blending with ‘good beer'. Less dramatic and harder to spot is substitution by similar yeast that behaves atypically in fermenter and triggers a shift in product flavour and aroma.

 
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