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Old 02-07-2013, 03:26 PM   #1
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Default Alpha acetolactate decarboxylase - diacetyl killer

Anyone ever here of this enzyme (Alpha acetolactate decarboxylase) commercial brewers use to for maturation, applied in fermentation to reduce fermentation time by avoiding diacetyl formation? It reduces maturation time in lagers by preventing the formation of diacetyl by catalyzing the decarboxylation of alpha-acetolactate to acetoin. it shaves off 2-3 weeks in your lager times.

i've found that you cant buy it anywhere, unless you buy from the manufacturer at 5KG - which treats about 66,000 gallons of fermenting beer.

the rate is 1-2kg per 26400 gallons of beer. so at 2kg per 26,400 gallons of beer, that works out to .000075kg / .075grams per gallon. based upon that, you would need about .4grams per 5-6 gallon batch.

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Old 02-07-2013, 07:20 PM   #2
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Yes, I've heard of it under the trade name Maturex but I can't get it from my LHBS -- yet. We might hope that one of the companies that sells us bits of calcium chloride, phosphoric acid, icinglas, Sinamar etc. will one day make this available but let's also note that a traditional fermentation followed by traditional lagering will not require Maturex (or a diacetyl rest).

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Old 02-07-2013, 08:25 PM   #3
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On a side note and not necessarily directed at AJ or hog2up: It's funny how most home brewers scoff at the brewing practices of industrial brewers like InBev or MillerSAB yet many are readily embracing additives like Fermcap, 5.2 buffer, this maturation enzyme, PVPP, Biofine, Silicagel, ...

I'm interested in the technical discussion of this product, though.

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Old 02-07-2013, 08:55 PM   #4
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On a similar note, I find it a bit humorous the lastest craze in Molecular Gastronomy. Not because I have a problem with it, rather with the reality of that all it really is, is processed foods moved out of the industrial kitchen and into the fancy restaurant. Much of the materials, techniques and technology are right out of the processed food industry.

So I find humor in the fact that people rant about processed foods, and then turn around and rave about molecular gastronomy.

I have no real problem with using these kinds of additives in a beer. I follow Reinheitsgebot when it suits me (most of the time) but have no problem going against it.

The question is how does it affect the final product? Would the average person notice the difference in a beer that is traditionally aged versus one where various additives/processes were used to speed up the conditioning process. Using the gourmet vs processed food example.........., well is that really a proper analogy?

I'm assuming these products are geared toward the mass lager. How would these additive/processes behave/work with say an IPA?

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Old 02-07-2013, 09:40 PM   #5
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i guess i'm not so hung up or against use of enzymes. but i would be curious to see the difference in the finished product, compared to home brewing lager process. just the curious george in me i suppose.

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Old 02-07-2013, 09:54 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaiser View Post
On a side note and not necessarily directed at AJ or hog2up: It's funny how most home brewers scoff at the brewing practices of industrial brewers like InBev or MillerSAB yet many are readily embracing additives like Fermcap, 5.2 buffer, this maturation enzyme, PVPP, Biofine, Silicagel, ...
Homebrewers are embracing the lager brewing practices of the big guys for the same reason the big guys use them. They want beer fast. If you pitch lager at cold temp (close to 40 °F) and let it warm itself to about 48 °F and let it ferment there to within 1°P of terminal, then lower the temperature gradually to around freezing and transfer the the beer, with yeast, to a lagering tank there will be no diacetyl. If you ferment at higher temperature, even if including a 'diacetyl' rest, then transfer without yeast for lagering there will be. This is because diacetyl is formed by non enzymatic oxidation of alpha aceto lactate in the package after the beer is 'finished'. If you introduce new, active yeast they will reduce the diacetyl formed from this oxidation first to acetoin and then 2,3 butane diol. If you add acetolactate decarboxylase it decarboxylates aceto lactate (should be no surprise there) leaving 2,3 butane diol. No diacetyl ever gets formed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaiser View Post
I'm interested in the technical discussion of this product, though.
Being a nerdy science guy I'm interested in the stuff too but I'd never use it because I do the traditional fermentation/lagering thing. I've got time.
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Old 02-14-2013, 05:00 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajdelange View Post
This is because diacetyl is formed by non enzymatic oxidation of alpha aceto lactate in the package after the beer is 'finished'. If you introduce new, active yeast they will reduce the diacetyl formed from this oxidation first to acetoin and then 2,3 butane dione. If you add acetolactate decarboxylase it decarboxylates aceto lactate (should be no surprise there) leaving 2,3 butane dione. No diacetyl ever gets formed.
Diacetyl is 2,3-butanedione. I think you mean 2,3-butanediol.
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Old 02-14-2013, 05:11 PM   #8
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I do indeed. Thanks.

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Old 03-19-2013, 05:50 PM   #9
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Sorry if this is a Necro, but I was cruising around for some info on this enzyme being used in wine and found this thread.

This enzyme exists and has been used by some of the larger brewers to achieve shorter rests etc. Not for as long as you might think though, the enzyme was only isolated in the mid to late 1980's.

The problem in getting it into homebrew supply shops is literally cost. This enzyme is incredibly expensive, and has very small dosing, usually 10-20ppm. As hog2up calculated, less than half a gram per 5 gallon batch. Problem with that is that a distributor has to buy 10-25kg minimum from an enzyme provider. So that means they have enough for 20,000-50,000 5 gallon batches that they have about 1-2 years to sell (enzymes have a shelf-life).

Also take note as was mentioned before, this enzyme prevents the actual formation of diacetyl by altering the precursor to it. If there is already diacetyl in solution, this enzyme will do nothing to said diacetyl. Preemptive strike or bust, more or less.

Hope this helps!

SpecZyme

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Old 03-19-2013, 06:07 PM   #10
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Somebody here (i.e. on HBT) about a source for this stuff under a different trademark and in quantities aimed at the home brewer. Can't remember the trade name though.

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