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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing > BIAB Brewing > Wow! BIAB no mashout no-chill brewday
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Old 11-21-2013, 03:35 PM   #31
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I wondered why the Aussies didn't have a problem with Botulism with storing the wort for so long so I did some research on botulism and found this.

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Spores are not killed by boiling; however botulism is uncommon because special, rarely obtained conditions are necessary for botulinum toxin production from C. botulinum spores, including an anaerobic, low-salt, low- acid, low-sugar environment at ambient temperatures.
Since wort is naturally acidic, it prevents botulin spores from growing in it.
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Old 11-21-2013, 05:53 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by carlk47 View Post
I don't think anyone could respond and say "yes its perfectly safe", because I'm not sure that anyone has found definitive evidence either way(from my limited reading on the subject). Although I can say that if you read the Aussiehomebrewers forum, they have been no-chill brewing for years and it's fairly widespread over there due to water constraints. I'd have to believe that if there were a major issue it would have been brought to light at this point. I've heard of aussie brewers storing wort up to a year.. not that I plan to do that, but it's nice to know its been done.
I have read their forum extensively in the past. The vast majority of No-Chill brewers pitch soon after brewing, usually the next day.

The danger (admitedly low) with a 3 month delay is that can be enough time for a slow growing bacteria to emit toxins.


>>So I have to ask- Is "long" duration no-chill brewing any riskier than say, wild fermenting or tasting an infected batch?

Yes.

"Wild fermenting" lets bacteria and yeast start consuming your wort in the presence of Oxygen. You may get some unpleasant tasting beer but it wont contain botulism toxin.
Infected beer is typically infected with micro-organisms that make the beer unpleasant to drink, but not highly toxic. Of course if its infected with Samonella you will get sic, but thats not what beer is usually infected with.


>> (RM-MN) Since wort is naturally acidic, it prevents botulin spores from growing in it.

Wort does NOT have a low enough pH to inhibit the growth of Botulism. A wort with a pH of 5.5 at room temperature is not the same as a pH of 4.2


> (Epimetheus) .No-chill is safe as other methods and creates a good product even after several months.

Thats not true, there is a slight risk of botulism because the heat will not necessarily kill spores.



The Botulism risk of No-Chill is not the next day use, it's the use in 3-4+ months. I'm not saying its likely, its probably very unlikely, but it's a real risk that brewers should be aware of.

I see a lot of bad science being quoted that gives incorrect and misleading comfort.

Anyone who wants to do long term No-Chill brewing should know the risk.
If the risk of death or serious hospitalization requiring weeks/months of recovery is 1 in a million form using 3 month old wort, would it be worth it to you?
For some yes, for others no.
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Old 11-22-2013, 02:42 AM   #33
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You obviously no more about botulism than your average home brewer and this is good information. Personally,I think buckets are cheap and I'd rather get things bubbling the next morning. What no chill allow me to do is BIAB brew AG during the week so I can spend the weekend with the kids. If I do the chilling at night while I sleep it keeps the brew day short enough to make that happen.

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Old 11-22-2013, 11:07 AM   #34
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I spent some time researching botulism and getting the real info is difficult. What I found was that as the acidity goes up the amount of time boiling and the temperature requirement goes down. For a low acid food you need high temperature (like 240 degrees) for 10 minutes or lower temp (212, boiling) for 10 to 20 hours. At the acidity of wort the amount of boiling was never mentioned. However, what really saves us from dying from botulism is its requirement for aerobic conditions. As little as 2% oxygen completely inhibits the growth and toxin production. When you transfer your wort (how much oxygen is left after an hour boil?) to another container you would get some oxygen dissolved into the wort. How much? I don't know but 2% isn't very much.

I also found that in a typical year about 12 people die from botulism toxin in the US. 12 divided by 240 million is a pretty small percentage and while I don't want to be one of them, the chances of it happening is much like the chances of winning the big lottery without buying a ticket.

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Old 11-22-2013, 12:56 PM   #35
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Fresh boiled wort will have very little dissolved oxygen. Hot liquids can't absorb much gas.

I think your risk of botulism from improperly canning asparagus is likely higher, but keep in mind that the WEIRDER the thing you're doing, the less statistics about how many people have died from it should inform your judgment. Probably no one died last year trying to make venomous snakes do ballet, but that doesn't make it safe.

The fact is that wort has a lowish pH, a highish sugar content, and some oxygen. So if "ish" and "some" is enough to alleviate your concern about a near-untreatable, instantly fatal neurological disease for you or someone who drinks your beer, just to get some dubious extra convenience, you go with that. I pressure can wort concentrate for my starters, and I give it a good 20min at 255F.

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Old 11-22-2013, 01:41 PM   #36
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I think if you No-chill and pitch your yeast within a few days you are most likely safe from Botulism. Its the using the wort 3-6 months later that would concern me.

How do you transfer boiling wort to a No-Chill container? With a siphon? With a ball valve? You aren't really aerating your wort, you are putting the tube into the container and transferring.

If you first Aerate your wort in the brew kettle, using teh Stainless Steel Mix-Stir (for example) you might be able to protect against Botulism. I don't know, but that's an interesting idea.

Since the wort is still very hot, and the mixing is for under 2 minutes, it wont cool too much, before transferring to the No-Chill container. Would that increase the risk of infection by air born bacteria? Or maybe the temperature is still high enough.

This would be interesting to try out, and a possible way to making a wort that could be used months later.

Would Hot Side Aeration have any impact on the taste since you would be introducing 7/8ppm Oxygen into very hot wort.

Hot Side Aeration is scorned by some, but this time we are talking about adding a lot of Oxygen - mixing with a drill for 60-120 seconds.

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Old 11-22-2013, 03:50 PM   #37
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It's crazy-ass nuts, though. Botulinum doesn't even have to make a container swell to kill you. It may not even stink. But I am entirely talking about that months-long storage idea, a week or less is totally safe if contained when near boiling. But months!

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Old 11-22-2013, 05:59 PM   #38
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Here's an easy way to tell if your food poisoning is caused by botulism:

If you get sick soon after drinking the beer, with cramping, vomiting, and Diarrhea = not botulism

Slow onset, paralysis and death = botulism

So what I suggest is if you want to use wort stored in a No chill container for several months (as opposed to just a few days)-

Use the wort, make the beer, and bring a six pack to your home brew club. make sure people have a good drink, and note who drinks it. If they attend the following meeting, then consume your beer (now aged a month, which is good for many styles, but not IPAs).

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