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Old 05-19-2009, 05:40 PM   #1
ScrumpyJack
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Default Bacteria a problem?

When making cider, do you have to be worried about bacteria getting into the liquid while it's fermenting or other stages?
How can you stop this when just making a home brew?

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Old 05-19-2009, 07:29 PM   #2
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Yes.

Sanitize all your utensils before you begin, using a cleansing solution such as Star*San or diluted bleach, and keep your fermenting vessel sealed away from outside influences through an airlock.

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Old 05-19-2009, 07:30 PM   #3
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There's bacteria in everything. That's why you pitch yeast into the juice so it overwhelms the other bacteria already in the juice. If you let it ferment naturally, there's lots of yeast that live specifically on apples that will overtake any other nasties.

That said, good sanitation practices are essential. If you use storebought juice, it's already been pasteurized and doesn't need any more done with it if you ferment it in the original container.

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Old 05-19-2009, 08:54 PM   #4
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Most bacteria need oxygen and during primary so much co2 is produced they cannot grow. After primary keep 02 out and sulphites up and bacteria can't thrive. Bacteria also need food, mainly sugar and malic acid. If you ferment completely dry and do a malo-lactic, there isn't much left for them to eat. Acetobacter will eat alcohol but need o2.

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Old 05-19-2009, 11:01 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregbathurst View Post
Most bacteria need oxygen and during primary so much co2 is produced they cannot grow. After primary keep 02 out and sulphites up and bacteria can't thrive. Bacteria also need food, mainly sugar and malic acid. If you ferment completely dry and do a malo-lactic, there isn't much left for them to eat. Acetobacter will eat alcohol but need o2.
And if there is bac in there - tastes like vinegar later?
WHat about the stages where you transfer liquids between bottles?
Maybe best to ferment in the same bottle to start with?
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Old 05-20-2009, 01:32 AM   #6
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If there is enough o2 for acetobacter you will probably get other problems as well but you're right, handling cider is one of the main opportunities for spoilage. On the other hand sulphite (so2) is an antioxidant as well as antibacterial, and a little bit of oxidation can actually improve flavour. It all adds to the excitement.

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Old 05-23-2009, 11:40 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregbathurst View Post
If there is enough o2 for acetobacter you will probably get other problems as well but you're right, handling cider is one of the main opportunities for spoilage. On the other hand sulphite (so2) is an antioxidant as well as antibacterial, and a little bit of oxidation can actually improve flavour. It all adds to the excitement.
The scrumpy I bought from the local farm the other day said it had sulphites in it yet when they poured it from the keg, the guy said it would only keep for 7-10 days? How come? I thought this stuff kept for months or is it because as soon as it is poured it is no longer in air tight condition?
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Old 05-23-2009, 09:40 PM   #8
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Yes.
When the juice is exposed to air, the sulphites will get used up and lose their effect.

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Old 05-23-2009, 10:31 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregbathurst View Post
Yes.
When the juice is exposed to air, the sulphites will get used up and lose their effect.
Why does it take 7-10 days?

Also, when you transfer cider from the fermentation jar to storage jars, doesn't that expose it to air and therefore the same problem?
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