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Bulk Breaking Dry Yeast

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Goose

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Getting tired of spending a fortune on little yeast packets when I am brewing 50 litre batches and require 4 of them for a fresh brew.... so was thinking about getting my hands on some of the fermentis strains which are available manufacturer only in 500g bricks (in fact S-189 is only available in 500g bricks). Now of course the economy of a 500g of dried yeast seems clear, but I dont like the idea of opening a packet to the wild atmosphere and digging a spoon in to measure out 50g , then resealing it. Would reckon by the 9th or 10th time I have done this that the risk of contaminating the yeast may be significantly increased. Therefore ideally I'd like to find a way of aseptically packing 50g into one packet and making 10 of these for safe storage until use.

Or am I being too anal about the risk of spore/wild yeast contamination if I open and reseal so many times..... if not, does anybody have any thoughts as to how this could be done ? Was thinking about one of those food vacuum sealers... if you trust that the bags you buy are sterile...
 

gravey

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why not just use wet yeast, split the packets and step up as required? That way you will have yeast on-hand and can pitch the correct amount for your volumes
 

Bribie G

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A number of retailers do just what you propose and vac pack the yeasts in foil barrier packs. CB certainly do this, and I recently bought some BrewCraft 15g American Ale that was quite obviously just repacked US-05. If you get yourself a vac packer and carry out the operation in a clean area, maybe even make yourself a tabletop "tent" and flush it with CO2 or just blow air through a filter to flush the filthy contaminated atmosphere inside it :eek: before weighing and packing the yeast.

sterile_cabinet.jpg

Well not quite as advanced as this but you get the idea, :p I reckon I could knock one up with some Polythene and some pine in an hour or so.

Then you can freeze the vac packs of dried yeast so probably just use ordinary vac seal packs. I bought some packs of Mauribrew lager yeast 3 years ago and kept them in the freezer. Around Christmas time I fished one out and just as an experiment I pitched it in some spare wort and it came up like the clappers overnight.
 

QldKev

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I think if you sanitised the work area, you should be pretty safe to split a brick and vac seal it into single use packs. I've often use the yeast Craftbrewer repacks and never had an issue.


Have you though about growing up a single yeast pack into a starter size, or re-using the yeast cake? Mr Malty has a calc for re-using the yeast cake. I always re-use my yeast cakes.

QldKev
 

punkin

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I use bricks, even though i have a 4' flowbench in my house i still just sprinkle yeast direct from the brick onto my wash.

It's just too anal for me aqll this umpteenth degree of sanitation.
 

Nick JD

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I know that Americans can buy fermentis in 500g packs for insanely cheap prices (<$50).

Anyone know of a source?
 

Logman

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I've got a brick of us05 and a Nottingham. I bag up about 15 at a time of each into those mini zip bags that are the size of a normal yeast pack. After doing that the brick gets vac sealed again. It stays at 3 degrees in the fridge and there's never been a problem.

I only plan to do this once and then move to Wyeast, but thought it was a good way to save a couple of hundred bucks while there was still so much to set up in my brewery before going to the next level with yeast.
 

Wolfy

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Or am I being too anal about the risk of spore/wild yeast contamination if I open and reseal so many times..... if not, does anybody have any thoughts as to how this could be done ? Was thinking about one of those food vacuum sealers... if you trust that the bags you buy are sterile...
Those plastic vacuum sealing bags, should - like cling-wrap - be manufactured aseptically.

If you were to purchase your yeast in bulk, then package it into 50g bags, seal them and then refrigerate, it would probably be the easiest and most economical way to do things.
Even if you did that on your kitchen work-bench, you'd be packing billions of yeast cells and an infinitesimally small (in comparison) number of contaminants, do it in a sensible location with sensible/normal home-brew type sanitation and the number of contaminants would (IMHO) not be worth worrying about (in comparison to the many billions of yeast cells).
 

Markbeer

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Have you though about growing up a single yeast pack into a starter size, or re-using the yeast cake? Mr Malty has a calc for re-using the yeast cake. I always re-use my yeast cakes.

QldKev
Hi

I have heard that you are not meant to make starters out of dry yeasts due to expending the energy reserves the maker has worked so hard to get in the pack.

I often seem to have long lag times and was making a lager from an almost expired pack of S-189, the lager being 25 litres of SG 1064. I made a 1 litre starter and shook it occasionally and after 24 hours pitched it into the main batch. I had activity within the hour and strong Krausen within 12. The beer is tasting great.

So is it nonsense that you should never make a starter from dry yeast? And if so, the solution to the problem of needing to add 4 packs to one 50L batch would be make a starter, then maybe rinse and re-use.

Mark
 

QldKev

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Hi

I have heard that you are not meant to make starters out of dry yeasts due to expending the energy reserves the maker has worked so hard to get in the pack.

I often seem to have long lag times and was making a lager from an almost expired pack of S-189, the lager being 25 litres of SG 1064. I made a 1 litre starter and shook it occasionally and after 24 hours pitched it into the main batch. I had activity within the hour and strong Krausen within 12. The beer is tasting great.

So is it nonsense that you should never make a starter from dry yeast? And if so, the solution to the problem of needing to add 4 packs to one 50L batch would be make a starter, then maybe rinse and re-use.

Mark

You shouldn't make a starter with dry yeast if you are just doing it to the same amount of viable yeast cells, as you are not really gaining anything and using up those energy reserves. But if you are stepping up the starter size, in this case to obtain 4 times the initial viable yeast cell count, then it is ok as you are actually achieving something positive. If that makes sense.

QldKev
 

Bribie G

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The other thing with stepping up dried yeast is to use a fairly low gravity wort, about 1040 so that the yeast uses up the nutrients available fairly quickly and carries out a growth phase, rather than it getting straight into fermenting. It's growth you want, not alcohol production at this stage.

That's what the guy from White Labs told us at last years' Home Brew Conference in Brisbane.

I've done that a few times with Wyeast and with dried yeasts and it's tricky to hit the sweet spot. Ideally you should have no krausen happening in the starter vessel but when the growth phase has completed and the nutrients used up the yeast should then sink to the bottom and you magically end up with far more yeast than you started with. Then this yeast can be drained, washed and pitched into the main fermentation.
 

Goose

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why not just use wet yeast, split the packets and step up as required? That way you will have yeast on-hand and can pitch the correct amount for your volumes
hey Gravey, fraid I'd have autolysis long before I'd finish and find step ups and starters a mega pain when I find I have equivalent results with dried yeasts

A number of retailers do just what you propose and vac pack the yeasts in foil barrier packs. CB certainly do this, and I recently bought some BrewCraft 15g American Ale that was quite obviously just repacked US-05. If you get yourself a vac packer and carry out the operation in a clean area, maybe even make yourself a tabletop "tent" and flush it with CO2 or just blow air through a filter to flush the filthy contaminated atmosphere inside it before weighing and packing the yeast.
cheers bribie G yes but do you really think CB go to the extent you show in the photo ? ;) Thats the issue, you just dont know do you


Have you though about growing up a single yeast pack into a starter size, or re-using the yeast cake? Mr Malty has a calc for re-using the yeast cake. I always re-use my yeast cakes
oh yes I do re-use the yeast cake when I can time the kegspace... but still also good to be able to change styles if need be.


I know that Americans can buy fermentis in 500g packs for insanely cheap prices (<$50).

that is true but you would probably have to double that by the time you add freight. But still, I have seen a retailer here with the notoriously difficult to source S-189 at $190 AUD before any shipping. :eek:
 

Nick JD

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that is true but you would probably have to double that by the time you add freight. But still, I have seen a retailer here with the notoriously difficult to source S-189 at $190 AUD before any shipping. :eek:
$47 Canadian for 500g of US05 if you walk into a shop in Toronto.

Be nice if the site sponsors would charge that. ;)
 

Logman

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cheers bribie G yes but do you really think CB go to the extent you show in the photo ? ;) Thats the issue, you just dont know do you
I've got a 500g of us05 and a Nottingham, been using 6 months or more. I bag up around 15 at a time into zip lock bags around the same size as a small yeast pack and then vaccuum the 500g pack. Have done this twice, no problems so far. I plan to go to liquid yeat but thought this was a good way to save a couple of hundred bucks in the meantime. I just make sure to clean and sanitize the spoon and use new plastic bags each time.
 

mxd

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$47 Canadian for 500g of US05 if you walk into a shop in Toronto.

Be nice if the site sponsors would charge that. ;)
108.25 for 500g us05 at kegking
 

loikar

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Why not find your closest brewery, give them a call and ask if you can have 2L of slurry?.

Most of them use US05.
 

WildaYeast

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I bought a 500g pack from CB. I just cut a small slit in a corner and then weighed out the right amount for each brew, using the calculator on Mr Malty. No contamination as I was just pouring -- not sticking anything in there. Afterward I just rolled it up tight to minimise air and popped it into a plastic container (the kind with a gasket) and put it back into the freezer.

Being able to weigh out the right amount for the gravity and volume of beer felt nice -- not sure how critical it is. Took me a good year to get through it and no contamination issues. The Mr Malty calc includes a field for date and as the yeast gets older it just increases the weight required.

Personally, I wouldn't worry about going to the effort of bagging anything. I leave my baking yeast sitting in the freezer without the same precautions. The little yeast balls are pretty effectively packaged as it is and you never have a totally sterile environment...
 

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