• We have implemented the ability to gift someone a Supporting Membership now! When you access the Upgrade page there is now a 'Gift' button. Once you click that you can enter a username to gift an account Upgrade to. Great way to help support this forum plus give some kudos to anyone who has helped you.

Powells Malt - My Experiences

Aussie Home Brewer

Help Support Aussie Home Brewer:

Boots

Well-Known Member
Joined
6/12/02
Messages
649
Reaction score
1
I wasn't going to worry about getting my grain returned. It was only half a bag, so the freight costs and trouble, in conjunction with a rather severe case of laziness make it not worth the trouble. I'll just ditch it unless I get talked out of it between now and then. They've already been notified of the problem by MAH.

I am a bit worried about the other brewer I shared the bag with, as he's already brewed with it, but he's out of town at the moment. Not sure how he missed it.

It's obviously a pretty big problem, as this means that there are multiple different batches of malt mouldy, and mislabeled.

I hope Powells get it all sorted out.
 

dicko

Boston Bay Brewery
Joined
11/1/04
Messages
3,393
Reaction score
576
Boots said:
I have just had a look at the half bag of Organic Pilsener which I went in on with Roach. He'd previously said he'd checked it so I didn't bother looking....
Was sharing a beer with Dicko and the conversation turned to malt so we had a look .... and I found mouldy grain.

Lots of the split grains where covered on the open part of the grain (i.e. not the husk, but the inside). A fair few whole grains also had mould along the seam of the grain.

So anyone who got the organic pilsener should make sure their grain is good.

Similar results as everyone else re: foreign matter.
[post="66158"][/post]​
Yes, I was surprised but Boots' grain has some " mouldy grains" among the good ones.
I received 4 bags and they all appear OK but the organic that Boots received was a bad sample.
I'll put it this way -
If a farmer turned up to a silo with a sample that was as mouldy as the sample I saw at Boots' place then he would be sent home with the load destined for "chook feed". His description is very accurate.
I have been away and lost the direction of this thread but if Boots shared a bag with Roach, then IMO Powells owe them another bag(between them).
Cheers

then was the edit
 

Guest Lurker

Big Dog Brewing
Joined
21/11/03
Messages
2,063
Reaction score
2
Mr Wizard in BYO says below that mould on malt can be pretty nasty. Note that aflatoxins could potentially grow on malt, and the bad thing about them is they dont just make you sick, they potentially cause cancer as well. Not trying to stir things up, and I aint no microbiologist, just pointing out that while in many cases I might eat something after scraping the mould off, I wouldnt be too keen on brewing with a mouldy malt.

From BYO website

Dear Mr. Wizard:

I bought some malt extract in 10-pound pails. I recently noticed that mold has developed on top of the malt. Has this ruined my extract or will the mold be eliminated in the boil? Can I scrape the top layer off and use what is left? Will refrigeration of the malt prevent mold? Please help!
John O'Brien
Via e-mail

Mr. Wizard replies: Malt extract and damp malt will grow mold. Moldy grain certainly should not be used for brewing and I personally would not use malt extract with mold on the surface, though some brewers do. Removing the mold from the surface of the extract may completely remove the mold from the container but then again it may not. Mold is bad for two main reasons.
Moldy grain is a known cause of gushing in beer. Certain molds, for example Fusarium species, excrete proteins that act as nucleation sites for carbon dioxide break-out in finished beer. In simple terms this means that when a bottle of beer is opened, the carbon dioxide uncontrollably breaks out of solution and a huge foamy mess gushes from the beer bottle. This is why it is called "gushing." The same thing could possibly result from using moldy malt extract.
Another reason to avoid using moldy malt or malt extract is that certain molds produce mycotoxins (toxins from mold) when they grow. Although many mycotoxins are completely destroyed when heated, some mycotoxins become more toxic when heated, as is the case with certain types of aflotoxin. This same concern applies to eating moldy foods. Not all molds are bad and some add a very nice flavor to food, such as Penicillium roqefortii that is used to make blue cheese.
The mold growing on your malt extract is most likely an airborne mold that came into contact with extract when you first opened it for use. Refrigeration will certainly slow the growth of mold and will extend the shelf-life of pails that are opened and only partially used. However, molds will grow in the refrigerator given enough time. Mold growth can be prevented on grains by storing grain in a dry environment.
 

dicko

Boston Bay Brewery
Joined
11/1/04
Messages
3,393
Reaction score
576
Guest Lurker said:
Mr Wizard in BYO says below that mould on malt can be pretty nasty. Note that aflatoxins could potentially grow on malt, and the bad thing about them is they dont just make you sick, they potentially cause cancer as well. Not trying to stir things up, and I aint no microbiologist, just pointing out that while in many cases I might eat something after scraping the mould off, I wouldnt be too keen on brewing with a mouldy malt.

From BYO website

Dear Mr. Wizard:

I bought some malt extract in 10-pound pails. I recently noticed that mold has developed on top of the malt. Has this ruined my extract or will the mold be eliminated in the boil? Can I scrape the top layer off and use what is left? Will refrigeration of the malt prevent mold? Please help!
John O'Brien
Via e-mail

Mr. Wizard replies: Malt extract and damp malt will grow mold. Moldy grain certainly should not be used for brewing and I personally would not use malt extract with mold on the surface, though some brewers do. Removing the mold from the surface of the extract may completely remove the mold from the container but then again it may not. Mold is bad for two main reasons.
Moldy grain is a known cause of gushing in beer. Certain molds, for example Fusarium species, excrete proteins that act as nucleation sites for carbon dioxide break-out in finished beer. In simple terms this means that when a bottle of beer is opened, the carbon dioxide uncontrollably breaks out of solution and a huge foamy mess gushes from the beer bottle. This is why it is called "gushing." The same thing could possibly result from using moldy malt extract.
Another reason to avoid using moldy malt or malt extract is that certain molds produce mycotoxins (toxins from mold) when they grow. Although many mycotoxins are completely destroyed when heated, some mycotoxins become more toxic when heated, as is the case with certain types of aflotoxin. This same concern applies to eating moldy foods. Not all molds are bad and some add a very nice flavor to food, such as Penicillium roqefortii that is used to make blue cheese.
The mold growing on your malt extract is most likely an airborne mold that came into contact with extract when you first opened it for use. Refrigeration will certainly slow the growth of mold and will extend the shelf-life of pails that are opened and only partially used. However, molds will grow in the refrigerator given enough time. Mold growth can be prevented on grains by storing grain in a dry environment.
[post="66254"][/post]​
Hi GL,
I agree that I wouldn't use mouldy grain ( with the risks ) and I would include the grain that I saw at Boots' I would be discarding or replacing.
Cheers
 

roach

brasserie de cancrelat
Joined
23/4/04
Messages
724
Reaction score
2
Boots said:
I wasn't going to worry about getting my grain returned. It was only half a bag, so the freight costs and trouble, in conjunction with a rather severe case of laziness make it not worth the trouble. I'll just ditch it unless I get talked out of it between now and then. They've already been notified of the problem by MAH.

I am a bit worried about the other brewer I shared the bag with, as he's already brewed with it, but he's out of town at the moment. Not sure how he missed it.

It's obviously a pretty big problem, as this means that there are multiple different batches of malt mouldy, and mislabeled.

I hope Powells get it all sorted out.
[post="66223"][/post]​
brewed with 2kg of the powells organic a amonth ago in making an APA. I took the 2kg from the top of the bag and it literally had 1 or 2 mouldy grains in the 2kgs and so thought it was OK and proceeded to brew it. tried it out of the keg for the first time on the weekend and tastes OK. given the info from Mr Wiz, via GL, I will probably turf it.

I suspect the mould has grown from the bottom of the bag from which happened to be Boots's half(sorry m8). So the bag has probably drawn some moisture from the bottom somehow when stored before shipping. In checking the remainder of my half bag this morning I notice that the mould is now quite prominent and so has grown from just a slight trace to something that you would never brew with.

thanks to boots, gl and dicko for the info. I would probably not have checked the grain again for another month by which time it would have had a life of its on and the keg would have been emptied. Perhaps the mould problem is ocurring with their slower moving stock.

the rest of the powells malt appears mould free and based on previous brewing experiences with it has turned out a good beer.
 

dicko

Boston Bay Brewery
Joined
11/1/04
Messages
3,393
Reaction score
576
As Roach said the mould problem could be due to poor storage allowing moisture to take hold.
I did notice that the bag that the Powells Malt comes in is a paper type product for want of a better description and most of the other maltsters products seem to be packed in a plastic type bag. I have thrown the Powells bags away so i can't be sure if they actually had a liner.
Maybe the paper type is cheaper but at what cost in the long run??
I personally would be asking Powells for another bag. <_<
Cheers
 

MAH

Well-Known Member
Joined
17/3/04
Messages
900
Reaction score
2
Hi Dicko

The Powells malt comes in double walled paper with a plastic liner. It's not as tough or as well sealed as other malsts I've used, but these have been for export malts that probably require the extra precautions.

I would say that the packaging is probably quite suitable for a product aimed at the local market and would help to reduce cost to the purchaser.

Cheers
MAH
 

Sean

Well-Known Member
Joined
8/10/04
Messages
441
Reaction score
2
dicko said:
As Roach said the mould problem could be due to poor storage allowing moisture to take hold.
I did notice that the bag that the Powells Malt comes in is a paper type product for want of a better description and most of the other maltsters products seem to be packed in a plastic type bag. I have thrown the Powells bags away so i can't be sure if they actually had a liner.
Maybe the paper type is cheaper but at what cost in the long run??
I personally would be asking Powells for another bag. <_<
Cheers
[post="66298"][/post]​
There is a liner inside the paper. I haven't tested them or anything but they look to me to be at least as moisture proof as the Joe Whites sacks, and I'd have thought paper is more likely to show signs of damp on the outside.
 

Batz

Batz Brewery...Hand crafted beers from the 'Batcav
Joined
8/8/03
Messages
12,727
Reaction score
1,409
I have recieved a reply from Powells
as you can see some of thier malt will be definitely ok.
I have asked if the Munich , Vienna , Organic Pils can be guaranteed


Hi Jeff
as we advised Mark, the Munich and Caramalt had been sitting in sacks and had absorbed mioisture through a concrete floor during our recent bout of heavy rain.All our wheat , ale , pilsner malts are freshly produced and still in silo.The organic malt is 5 months old and high protein . Please advise if you want to proceed with an amended order .
Cheers


Batz
 

Ross

CraftBrewer
Joined
14/1/05
Messages
9,262
Reaction score
370
Sounds to me that the damp was present before bagging - as Sean points out, if they had been sat somewhere damp it would be clearly evident on the sack & the plastic liner should be more than sufficient as a barrier...

Until they get something as fundamentaly important as this sorted out, I won't be buying their product. Not worth the hassle IMO to save a few dollars - but will gladly support some market competition once these problems are ironed out - So here's to hoping, nothing but good reports from the Qld order...
 

MAH

Well-Known Member
Joined
17/3/04
Messages
900
Reaction score
2
Ross said:
the plastic liner should be more than sufficient as a barrier...
Well I have to agree with you Ross. The assertion that the mould was due to absorbing moiture through a concrete floor is a little hard to swallow. For one each bag has a moisture barrier in the form of a platic liner and secondly it's hard to accept that mositure got in through a concrete floor.

The other thing that doesn't add up is that if the malt had become mouldy due to moisture, you would expect it to have become slack, particularly as most of the affected grains are boken in two and very exposed. The grains I tested were definitely not slack, which would suggest it happened prior to it being dried and kilned. Also the malt is not mouldy as such, but mould stained (if that makes sense).

Something is wrong and I hope Powells find the problem, because I would like to continue supporting them.

Cheers
MAH
 

ausdb

Copper kettles don't kill people....
Joined
21/8/04
Messages
1,517
Reaction score
0
MAH said:
Well I have to agree with you Ross. The assertion that the mould was due to absorbing moiture through a concrete floor is a little hard to swallow. For one each bag has a moisture barrier in the form of a platic liner and secondly it's hard to accept that mositure got in through a concrete floor.
You would be suprised how much moisture is transmitted through a concrete slab, if it wasnt a problem why would cement manufacturers recommend that bags of cement are stored on pallets not just straight on to a concrete slab.

cheers ausdb
 

MAH

Well-Known Member
Joined
17/3/04
Messages
900
Reaction score
2
ausdb said:
You would be suprised how much moisture is transmitted through a concrete slab
OK you get moisture through a slab, but enough to soak through a double walled paper outer, a plastic inner and to uniformly wet the grain in a 25kg bag to a level suited to the growth of mould?
 

Ross

CraftBrewer
Joined
14/1/05
Messages
9,262
Reaction score
370
ausdb said:
MAH said:
Well I have to agree with you Ross. The assertion that the mould was due to absorbing moiture through a concrete floor is a little hard to swallow. For one each bag has a moisture barrier in the form of a platic liner and secondly it's hard to accept that mositure got in through a concrete floor.
You would be suprised how much moisture is transmitted through a concrete slab, if it wasnt a problem why would cement manufacturers recommend that bags of cement are stored on pallets not just straight on to a concrete slab.

cheers ausdb
[post="66327"][/post]​
ausb,

You would like to think that if moisture is a problem to the product you're selling, then it would be stored in a place where it's protected. If they are storing the grain on concrete without any damp course then it's going to be an ongoing problem. But if the grains were already bagged, as they seem to be suggesting, I don't see how even this would be a problem - with regards to cement bags, they are just paper - no plastic liner - so they would be very acceptable to moisture.

Just one final point - doesn't the grain have a moisture content of over 4% anyway - or am I missing something?
 

roach

brasserie de cancrelat
Joined
23/4/04
Messages
724
Reaction score
2
organipils2.jpghere is a piccy of a random sample from my stock of powells organic pils

you can see the mould for yourself.

I must stress though that I am more than happy with the other Powells malts I have. Hopefully now that they are aware of the problem Powells can quickly fix it. We need Powells to be around in the longer term and provide a viable, affordable option for HB'ers, as we need competition in the local market and with Powells niche floor malted product it provides a good alternative.
 

Sean

Well-Known Member
Joined
8/10/04
Messages
441
Reaction score
2
I don't have access to a leaky concrete floor, but I do have some empty Powells sacks full of sticks for fire lighting, so I've stood one in a small puddle to see what happens.
 

Sean

Well-Known Member
Joined
8/10/04
Messages
441
Reaction score
2
roach said:
View attachment 3063We need Powells to be around in the longer term and provide a viable, affordable option for HB'ers, as we need competition in the local market and with Powells niche floor malted product it provides a good alternative.
[post="66339"][/post]​
Absolutely.
 

Sean

Well-Known Member
Joined
8/10/04
Messages
441
Reaction score
2
Sean said:
I don't have access to a leaky concrete floor, but I do have some empty Powells sacks full of sticks for fire lighting, so I've stood one in a small puddle to see what happens.
[post="66342"][/post]​
Well, I can now definitively say that moisure can find it's way in, despite the liner (probably through the seems in the floor of the bag).
 

roach

brasserie de cancrelat
Joined
23/4/04
Messages
724
Reaction score
2
Sean said:
Sean said:
I don't have access to a leaky concrete floor, but I do have some empty Powells sacks full of sticks for fire lighting, so I've stood one in a small puddle to see what happens.
[post="66342"][/post]​
Well, I can now definitively say that moisure can find it's way in, despite the liner (probably through the seems in the floor of the bag).
[post="66349"][/post]​
i would be interested to see a side by side comparison with traditional packaging of JW or weyermann for example.

i also think the powells seams are more susceptible to stretching because of the brown paper bag packaging which is not quite as strong as the normal bags. I know that very little force is required to open up the seam at the top of the bag of powells cf JW eg.
 

Darren

Beer Dog
Joined
11/5/04
Messages
3,549
Reaction score
6
My guess is that it was contaminated before it went into the bag.
Probably sat around wet for too long and the growth started then.
Once it has started there is no way to stop it.
I reckon that the entire batch of that malt should be re-called and replaced.
 
2

Latest posts

Top