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-   -   Yeast activation/hydrating...why? (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f32/yeast-activation-hydrating-why-370286/)

nvs-brew 11-27-2012 01:12 AM

Yeast activation/hydrating...why?
Going to start my 1st cider tonight, got everything ready...
Just a question about the yeast...
Do I need to activate it 1st? Or can I pitch dry?
If I need to when is the best point to start my activation..
3rd and lastly..what is the best way to do it?
Warm water/juice/apple skins and juice?
Any help would be great..

steber 11-27-2012 01:45 AM


Dry yeast needs to be reconstituted in a gentle way. During rehydration the cell membrane undergoes changes which can be lethal to yeast. In order to reconstitute the yeast as gently as possible (and minimize/avoid any damage) yeast producers developed specific rehydration procedures. Although most dry wine yeast will work if pitched directly, it is recommended to follow the rehydration instructions to insure the optimum performance of the yeast.
as for the medium, I'd think water would be you're best bet, as it's low gravity, and not stressing the yeast.

Is it necessary? No, it's not. Lots of people will pitch the dry yeast directly in the ferementer. Personally though, I cater to my yeast in all ways possible. It's a 15 minute step that's recommended. They do a lot for me, so to take the time to properly rehydrate is the least i can do.

Just my .02 though.

nvs-brew 11-27-2012 01:47 AM

Medium? Gravity? 1.050?

steber 11-27-2012 02:02 AM

yes, medium, an object in which microorganisms or cells experience growth. I was referring to the gravity of water. Which is ~1.000, depending on your source. Which means no sugars or fermentables. If sugar is present off the bat, it has potential to stress the rehydrating yeast. If it were in water, the yeasts would not be "working", just rehdyrating themselves.

nvs-brew 11-27-2012 02:04 AM

And how long would u activate the yeast before adding to juice? Minutes/hrs/days?

steber 11-27-2012 02:08 AM

Simply minutes for a dry yeast. Do you have the yeast package you plan to use?

Usually they have the directions on the back. Its been a few months since I've used dry yeast. It's something along the lines of boil a cup of water, let it cool down to ~90 degrees. Sprinkle the yeast on the water, let stand for 15 minutes. Stir with santized spoon and then let sit for another 10 minutes or so, then simply pour ontop of the your fermenter.

nvs-brew 11-27-2012 02:14 AM

Yeah I'm using a dry coopers ale packet...7g
I'm used to just adding that in at the end of my beer before sealing it...
Just cut the packet and poor in :)
so I apologies for my questions..,
Still rather new :)

steber 11-27-2012 02:22 AM

The practices I'm talking about are for beer, and from what I've read in the past apply to most anything you are fermenting.

nvs-brew 11-27-2012 02:28 AM

Yeah I've been mostly doing kit beer...they just say to pitch at the end...dry...I've seen a lot of ppl mentioning activating/hydrating (whatever it's called) on a few vids

Just trying to get a better understanding

Goyagon 11-29-2012 07:45 AM

Steber basically covered it but I thought u might want another description to get a better picture in ure head. Water has lower gravity than wort/beer/juice and it creates less osmotic pressure on the dry yeast. Dry yeast needs to be hydrated in order for it to go from dormant to active. Putting the yeast in water allows it to absorb a higher amount of water than from your beer just like how saltwater has the same effect vs water.
The higher gravity your beer the more beneficial it is to rehydrate. It isn't necessary with kit beers to rehydrate and might actually make them loose nutrients that dissolve into the rehydrating water depending on how long u rehydrate for. Hope this helps you understand the process of rehydrating.

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