First batch, worried about infection

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Zzyzx Rhoades

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This is my first attempt, starting off with fresh organic apples from a local farm, and had them pressed for me at a local cidery.

Trying to go with natural fermentation, so no campden or metabisulfate, no yeast added.

Straight into a 5 gal and 3 gal carboy with plenty of headspace for primary fermentation, airlock on.

They were pressed monday afternoon and into the walk-in-fridge ~38degrees f overnight. Brought home tuesday afternoon, room temperature 62-68 degrees. carboy still cold to the touch on wednesday.

Thursday evening I got adhesive thermometers on the containers, 64 degrees F reading. I also got my hydrometer and measured the SG at 1.062.

But I noticed 2 very small white spots, and lots of floating sediment. Much of the sediment fell down and settled after a gentle tap of the container.

Friday morning, still not much action in terms of fermentation. The white spot is a little fuzzy as seen in the picture, definitely not good!

At this point, is the batch done for? Should I wait and see? Or can I save it by changing directions, hitting it with some campden tablets, and pitching some yeast in it?

Thanks for the advice!


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Zzyzx Rhoades

Zzyzx Rhoades

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It's definitely fuzzy. Two of them, smaller than a pea in diameter. They are in the 5 gallon carboy. Hard to get a clear picture through the glass.
 
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Zzyzx Rhoades

Zzyzx Rhoades

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Sanitized fermenters the day before driving an hour to drop them off at the cidery.

I'm just hoping there is a way to salvage it now, before it goes any further.
 

Tobor_8thMan

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Unknown how they were handled at the cidery. Appears something unwanted definitely got in and caused the mold. Maybe from the apples themselves?

I could be wrong, but from the spontaneous fermentations I've seen the wild yeast doesn't make fuzz.

Ample amount of head space in the fermenters. Just air? Was the head space purged? Perhaps, something was in the head space, got to the apple solids and caused mold?
 
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Zzyzx Rhoades

Zzyzx Rhoades

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Update: looks like fermentation is starting to move. Better layer of bubbles, pushing up apple matter. No visible bubbling through the airlock at the moment.

There is still 2 or 3 of these little white mold-looking things, slightly bigger than yesterday but not much.

I am considering getting a turkey baster soaked in Star San and trying to suck out those few invaders. Any insight on that strategy from more experienced cider makers?

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It is really impossible to get a clear picture of the invaders through the glass, but it is smaller than a pea and slightly fuzzy.

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