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Old 10-16-2012, 01:23 AM   #1
sweetdaddy
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Are there any other liquid yeasts available besides those from White Labs and Wyeast? It seems that one of the biggest complaints from us home brewers is the cost for liquid yeasts. What would be an acceptable cost? Food for thought...

 
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Old 10-16-2012, 01:46 AM   #2
deepcdan99
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Talk to any local brew pubs in your area if you have one or more. I have two within driving distance that are happy to give out their yeast from one of their batches.

 
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Old 10-16-2012, 02:21 AM   #3
TNGabe
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People complain about $7 for a yeast pack? Seems pretty darn reasonable to me. I can't believe how lucky we are to be able to buy so many strains so easily.

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Old 10-16-2012, 02:24 AM   #4
deepcdan99
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TNGabe View Post
People complain about $7 for a yeast pack? Seems pretty darn reasonable to me. I can't believe how lucky we are to be able to buy so many strains so easily.
True, but if you could go to a gas station that was giving gas away, wouldn't u go to that one to fill up first? but they ony have three choices of gas at my station, I'd pay the little extra to get more options, LOL!

 
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Old 10-16-2012, 02:33 AM   #5
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Can you find other local homebrewers to swap slurry with? (that does not sound right...) That would be a free way to obtain liquid yeast. You can also culture out of bottles. That's also free after you drink the beer.

I do not know of any other providers of liquid yeast on the homebrew scale. There are larger commercial yeast banks that supply many breweries but I don't think they sell in small enough volumes to sell to homebrewers.

One $7 vial can go a long way if you are willing to wash and/or freeze yeast.

 
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Old 10-16-2012, 02:40 AM   #6
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There are plenty of ways to stretch out your yeast. You don't have to buy a pack/vial everytime you brew.
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Old 10-16-2012, 02:44 AM   #7
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When I buy a vial of white labs I usually plan two batches that I want the same strain for and just make a starter with half the vial for each batch. My LHBS sells expired vials for a third of the price so if he has something I want to use I buy it and make a starter with the whole vial.

 
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Old 10-16-2012, 04:09 AM   #8
stephelton
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There are a few things you can do to alleviate the cost of yeast:

1) Get free yeast from breweries -- easier to do in some places than others.

2) Yeast washing (save a small amount of yeast from one batch for a later batch). This is a lot of work (more than $7 as far as I'm concerned) and opens the door to infections and other problems. It can be fun, though

3) Yeast cake pitching - Throw a fresh batch of wort right into the primary fermenter of another batch just after you rack it. I do this very frequently; in fact, I usually plan the styles I brew around this. This also ensures a very strong fermentation, great for big beers and lagers. I'm told you should not do this for more than a generation of beer as a lot of unwanted crap can begin to accumulate. For that reason, I always toss the yeast after I've done this a single time.

4) Yeast starters. This is a viable option as opposed to buying multiple packages of yeast (for larger batches of beer).
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Old 10-16-2012, 04:24 PM   #9
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I think the cost is reasonable to me.
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Old 10-16-2012, 04:33 PM   #10
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Smart shopping takes care of the yeast cost, IMO. I've looked at listings from area HBS' (since moving to Nashua) and ruled one out completely when they want over $11 for a pack of Wyeast. I can get yeast via one of the online vendors (usually 3 packs at a time, in the insulated box) for less per pack.

IF you really don't want to spend the money on yeast, then you need to do something else. Like washing/harvesting the yeast cake from a batch and saving it for later use. I've done that before. You really do NEED to make a starter there, to be sure you actually HAVE viable yeast in the container. You also need to make sure you know what's in each container, and when it was harvested. If you have the room in a fridge, then it's a viable option. You could try yeast slanting if you have the gear for that too. Personally, that's far more effort, and cost, than I'll recover by doing so. Especially since I don't have all that much spare freezer space. The freezer in my brew fridge (a 10 cubic foot freezer top fridge) is FULL of hops. The freezer for food has, well, FOOD in it.
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