Makro photography of a soap bubble (Foto: webkinzluva1598 auf Pixabay)

Cleaning efficiency | Modern CIP systems are only a point of discussion when they don’t work as they should do. CIP systems provide great service for a long time without any grounds for complaint or the need for any further intervention – bar the necessary maintenance. Their degree of efficiency can decrease, however. More detailed study of CIP systems reveals that they do indeed have several weak points that can mutate into risks.

A hand wiping a surface clean (Photo: Matilda Wormwood on Pexels)

Contamination | Hygiene deficiencies on filling systems are usually a home-made problem. Even if this sounds like an extremely simple statement to make, nevertheless it’s a fact. But why is this so? And why do quality controllers today often not identify the weak points at their own plant? This requires some explanation, for it’s not for lack of suitable training.

Repeated spray shadow test: area of the infeed screw to the filler exposed to RET medium

Cleaning results validated | Spray shadow tests are a useful and proven tool for validation of automatic cleaning systems. This holds true for new installations, changes to existing systems and regular revision. Based on two industrial examples, the usefulness of two different spray shadow tests, both used at VLB, is illustrated.

Water and drops of water (Photo: Arek Socha on Pixabay)

Optimised cleaning | On-demand cleaning is today often seen as a vision for a new form of sanitation. But what’s behind this? How is the need for cleaning defined? Martin Löhrke, CEO of Jürgen Löhrke GmbH in Lübeck, Germany, takes a look at the options already in place to meet the requirements of individual cleaning operations.

Coliform bacteria (Photo: Gerd Altmann on Pixabay)

Brewery hygiene | If we look back on 50 years of brewing microbiology, we gain a number of extremely interesting insights. Can we draw a positive conclusion here or are there also negative aspects that have to be taken into account?

Taps for beer (Photo: Josh Olalde on Unsplash)

Recommended cleaning intervals | Beer hoses are currently being analysed in terms of life and cleanability in the context of an in-depth study at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) in Freising. Investigations described focus on appropriate cleaning intervals. Growth patterns of various microorganisms in beers were recorded in order to come up with information about necessary cleaning intervals of beverage dispensing units.

Steam treatment of a barrel in Oud Beersel brewery in Beersel, Belgium (Photo: Cliff Lucas)

Barrel ageing | In recent years, maturation of beers in wooden barrels is becoming an interesting avenue for breweries to expand and refine their beer portfolios. Especially in the craft beer sector there is an increasing consumer demand for more complex flavours and aromas, many of which can be obtained through barrel ageing of beer. However, microbial spoilage of the barrel has to be effectively controlled in order to ensure consistent product quality and reduce profit losses.

Cleaning in progress” warning sign (Photo: Oliver Hale on Unsplash)

Spent grain residue | Mash filters are currently the most common alternative to the classic lauter tun. The central filtering medium are filter cloths made of plastic. These filter cloths need to be thoroughly cleaned as following filtration they may be covered with spent grain residue.

Concentrated impurities | Modern machines for washing bottles, with their combination of chemical, thermal and mechanical cleaning functions, ensure that containers are cleaned properly. Nevertheless, the introduction of organic and inorganic impurities into the cleaning solution derived from adhesives and labels often presents special challenges. Caustic filtration and filtration of liquid in the water zone can offer more security in achieving the desired cleaning effect.

Plant for the anaerobic treatment of wastewater with gas storage  and gas treatment

Anaerobic wastewater treatment | A process devised by FlexBio Technologie GmbH in Einbeck, Germany, allows breweries to handle their wastewater sustainably and to exploit the energy it contains. The new generation of anaerobic wastewater treatment plants is compact and modular and provides small and medium-sized breweries especially with a solution that is economically viable.

Inspection of empties | Regular verification of cleaning performance of bottle washers in breweries is important in order to ensure perfect product quality and product safety. This is the reason why the Research Center Weihenstephan for Brewing and Food Quality, Freising, Germany, in cooperation with five breweries, validated a test series with standardised contaminated bottles. This should enable breweries to carry out their own checks.

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