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Old 03-21-2013, 10:39 PM   #1
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Default Hop utilization and Batch size

Just a quick question, does hop utilization change depending on the batch size? I know it changes depending on the Gravity of the wort.

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Old 03-21-2013, 10:43 PM   #2
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I could be wrong but I think I remember reading about hop utilization increasing with batch size but I'm pretty sure it was regarding commercial size equipment. You're probably ok up until about 2-3 barrels, but that's a complete guess.

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Old 03-22-2013, 03:42 PM   #3
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Yeah, i thought so, its just some comment on another forum that made me think.

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Old 03-22-2013, 03:55 PM   #4
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Actually, it's been disproven that wort gravity impacts hops utilization. It does not.

Boil size often can, though. As an example, say you have 2.5 gallons of 50 IBU wort. Then you add 2.5 gallons of water (0 IBUs). That means the topped up wort will have 25 IBUs.

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Old 03-22-2013, 04:10 PM   #5
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But isn't that just dilution. Just using random numbers for example here. I was thinking something like if you had 1 oz of hops in 10 gallons of wort which contribute's 10 IBU's. If you increased that 10 fold you would get more IBU's with the same percentage of hops; ie: 10 oz of hops in 100 gallons of wort would yield you 12 IBU's.

I am just using completely random numbers here just to show an example but this is what I think is happening when hop utilization is increased when you increase batch size. I remember reading something about this from commercial brewers stating that you just cant scale up a recipe from say 5 gallons to 5000 gallons as you would have to account for the hop utilization at that batch size. From what I understand (and I hope somebody can clarify), the grist can stay at the same percentages when shooting for your target gravity but the hops would need to be backed down a bit when shooting for the same IBU's due to the increased efficiency with the hop utilization when you brew bigger and bigger batches.

I hope I am not just spewing BS here but I want to think that I do remember reading about this and thats how I perceived what was being discussed. I hope somebody can clarify as I find this to be an interesting part of scaling recipes. It intrigues me that hops would act differently just from different batch sizes.

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Old 03-22-2013, 07:26 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TahoeRy View Post
It intrigues me that hops would act differently just from different batch sizes.
Batch size does impact utilization to an extent- but not in any meaningful way at the homebrew level.

When you make a 25 gallon batch, just scaling everything up times 5 is close enough. It's not much of a difference. Taking it from 5 gallons to 50,000 gallons would make a difference. But at a smaller size, it's pretty negligible.
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