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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Fermentation & Yeast > Shipping Liquid Yeast - Summer Months
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Old 08-21-2012, 03:08 AM   #1
MyakkaRiver
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Default Shipping Liquid Yeast - Summer Months

Just wondering about shipping yeast in the summer months. Even if you ship with a cold pack (shipping from AHS in Texas to Florida) can melt the cold pack on standard 3 day shipping - this has happened to me before. I have no trained palate for tasting beer off-flavors, but the IPA that I made tasted fine. But if the yeast get stuck in a UPS truck in summer heat and say get to about 90*F - granted this won't kill the yeast - but would the yeast put off any off-flavors during fermentation? Similar to if you pitched at 90*F? Or since they're practically dormant with no food source, does it have much affect at all? I did note that fermentation took about 48 hours to get started (White Labs California Ale - 2 vials) for OG 1.052 - so is that the only affect, a delayed start to fermentation?

I discovered a LHBS near me, so needless to say I will be buying yeast locally in the future.

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Old 08-21-2012, 03:46 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by MyakkaRiver View Post
would the yeast put off any off-flavors during fermentation? Similar to if you pitched at 90*F?

Or since they're practically dormant with no food source, does it have much affect at all? I did note that fermentation took about 48 hours to get started (White Labs California Ale - 2 vials) for OG 1.052 - so is that the only affect, a delayed start to fermentation?
I would say no off flavors come from a warm vial. edit: depends if your making starters (correct pitching rate) as some yeast will die at accellerated rates versus cold storage.

they keep em cold so the viability remains high and "can" age and still work. not to avoid off flavors. If you pitch at 90 you will have a bad beer IMHO, excessive phenols, hot alcohols, diacetyl etc.

But keep in mind. 90 degrees outside is not 90 degrees inside a hot ass trailor. I used to load em! easy 20 degree swing in those things.

Re reading, you say you had a delayed start. make a starter for your beers. gets them active, bumps up the cell count, and generally just makes em ready for the big fight.

I always do step starters on 1 vial and brew 10g batches. Think about making a DIY stir plate. super easy, cheap and incredibly beneficial. remember, you dont make beer, the yeast do.
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Old 08-21-2012, 04:23 AM   #3
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I had the same exact problem. Should 1 vial be enough for a 5g batch? Does the heat in shipping effect the viability? I'll consider the starter next time but would have the ice pack changed my result? Hope I have enough yeast left to do the job.

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Old 08-21-2012, 04:32 PM   #4
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I got 3 bad batches of wyeast from AHS in a row. The packs never swelled and when I opened them it looked like curdled/separated milk.

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Old 08-21-2012, 09:21 PM   #5
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I would say no off flavors come from a warm vial. edit: depends if your making starters (correct pitching rate) as some yeast will die at accellerated rates versus cold storage.

they keep em cold so the viability remains high and "can" age and still work. not to avoid off flavors. If you pitch at 90 you will have a bad beer IMHO, excessive phenols, hot alcohols, diacetyl etc.

But keep in mind. 90 degrees outside is not 90 degrees inside a hot ass trailor. I used to load em! easy 20 degree swing in those things.

Re reading, you say you had a delayed start. make a starter for your beers. gets them active, bumps up the cell count, and generally just makes em ready for the big fight.

I always do step starters on 1 vial and brew 10g batches. Think about making a DIY stir plate. super easy, cheap and incredibly beneficial. remember, you dont make beer, the yeast do.
Thanks for the response! I'm actually building a stir plate this week!
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Old 08-21-2012, 09:31 PM   #6
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I got 3 bad batches of wyeast from AHS in a row. The packs never swelled and when I opened them it looked like curdled/separated milk.
If you didn't make starters, or tried to ferment your beer, you don't know that you had bad yeast. There may have been a large loss of viability but there easily could have been enough to propagate if a starter was made.

I have had yeast look like after making a starter. I cooled the starter to decant the liquid. Until I swirled it a lot to loosen the cake it did look like cottage cheese.

To the OP: If you make a starter and decant the spent liquid you basically have fresh yeast and should have no off flavors from the yeast themselves.
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Old 08-22-2012, 02:46 AM   #7
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My fermentation is in full swing. It took 3 days but the airlock is bubbling and I have decent kraeusen. This is only my 6th batch and I had never used this string before. Learning new things each batch. The starter seems like the way to go.

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