yeast bank/ yeast business

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tripplehazzard

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Interested in starting my own home yeast bank. Has anyone done this? Also how would you go about starting your own business? Would you need a microbiology degree? Any information is much appreciated
 
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tripplehazzard

tripplehazzard

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What's your plan for keeping the strains pure and genetically intact?
I have no idea. I would be concerned with wild yeast,and keeping the strain strong from generation to Gen. I just want to start by freezing different varietys for starters.
 

eastoak

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I have no idea. I would be concerned with wild yeast,and keeping the strain strong from generation to Gen. I just want to start by freezing different varietys for starters.
if you had a yeast business you would want to have an idea about the strains you are selling, your customers probably would want to know.
 

atreid

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I have no idea. I would be concerned with wild yeast,and keeping the strain strong from generation to Gen. I just want to start by freezing different varietys for starters.
I'm sorry but I really don't think you know what you're getting into. It's one thing to do it for yourself, but selling them is another story. It's a microbiological product for human consumption. The legal ramifications are not negligible, neither is the science implied for conformity of genome and sanitation.
 
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tripplehazzard

tripplehazzard

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I'm sorry but I really don't think you know what you're getting into. It's one thing to do it for yourself, but selling them is another story. It's a microbiological product for human consumption. The legal ramifications are not negligible, neither is the science implied for conformity of genome and sanitation.
All I was looking for here was someone who was willing to help with references and maybe point me in the right direction. I appricate your concern, and am well aware of the science involved. People have been brewing beer for a very long time without having a clue what microbiology even was. I'm sure their brew was unique to the wild yeast and water source from their region. I was not fishing for put me downs and discouragement . It is something I am very passionate about. Something worth going to school and learning, while spending lots of time myself researching,experimenting and becoming more knowledgeable about. All I was looking for was someone to point me in the right direction. Thanks
 

woknblues

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I think microbiology would be an immense benefit. True, past brewers had no idea. Also, they tended to brew with only one type of yeast, usually the one residing within their equipment. As a yeast purveyor in these modern times, you would be expected to have a multitude of varieties of high quality, effective strains. Also, an effective distribution chain. Keep in mind that for yeasts to be sent by mail requires expensive and thoughtful packaging. people might balk at your product if it is more costly than "the big two".

Still, I think it can be done, and with only two large producers of liquid yeast, I feel that the market could bear another. Best of luck.
 

Kaiser

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Check out Al's Bugs (East Coast Yeast). He seems to be running a yeast lab that sells yeast to the public. I don't think he has equipment as sophisticated as the big two.

Kai
 

atreid

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All I was looking for here was someone who was willing to help with references and maybe point me in the right direction. I appricate your concern, and am well aware of the science involved. People have been brewing beer for a very long time without having a clue what microbiology even was. I'm sure their brew was unique to the wild yeast and water source from their region. I was not fishing for put me downs and discouragement . It is something I am very passionate about. Something worth going to school and learning, while spending lots of time myself researching,experimenting and becoming more knowledgeable about. All I was looking for was someone to point me in the right direction. Thanks
It wasn't about putting you down. What I thought I understood was that you were wondering if you needed a degree to do this properly, in the sense that you thought you didn't, so I wanted to do a reality check.

I'm a Biotechnology Engineer so I'm aware of the implications. Microbiology is Monk work and I never really liked this part of my studies, but already having a vision of where you want to go with it is priceless. Just stay focus on that when things get tough.

Is this a back to school thing or are you in the 19 to 23 age group?
 
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tripplehazzard

tripplehazzard

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It wasn't about putting you down. What I thought I understood was that you were wondering if you needed a degree to do this properly, in the sense that you thought you didn't, so I wanted to do a reality check.

I'm a Biotechnology Engineer so I'm aware of the implications. Microbiology is Monk work and I never really liked this part of my studies, but already having a vision of where you want to go with it is priceless. Just stay focus on that when things get tough.

Is this a back to school thing or are you in the 19 to 23 age group?
It would be a back to school thing for me. I love beer brewing as a hobby, but also love the science behind it. When I started homebrewing I could not belive that there where only 2 main manufacturing brands of yeast. So I wondered why is that? Is it a really fickle / hard process? I began to notice also that yeast is a huge cost for a home Brewer.these little microorganisms really began to intrigue me.at first I wanted to take part of the yeast I used in my brew and reproduce them. So I could use them later. Then I thought how? How do you preserve a certain type.. identify it and keep it strong .. yeast is the lifeblood for beer! I can't find any type of schooling that concentrates in yeast and production only. Big name labs have done it I'm sure others can DIY.
 

Broham1

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tripplehazzard said:
It would be a back to school thing for me. [...] I can't find any type of schooling that concentrates in yeast and production only.
Maybe this is what you're looking for?

http://oregonstate.edu/dept/foodsci/undergrad/fermopt.htm

I've heard amazing things about the program and know a couple people currently in it. Plus, it's just a few hours from Wy'East.
 

atreid

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I checked out the courses and first thing that comes to my mind is that pure microbiology undergraduate programs usually have a lot about fundamentals and lab practices but few about true practical applications for the real world. So unless you want to continue to M.Sc. and Ph.D, you end up in a research lab as someone's slave.

I admit that this particular program seems to focus on concrete practical applications for the INDUSTRY. At least if you don't end up starting your yeast business, you'll have something more concrete and usable to find a non-research job.

That said, you should make sure that you don't dislike lab work, otherwise you'll go insane in both programs... ;-)
 

KBentley57

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A question I would have is, where are you going to get your original strains of yeast? Surely you're not just going to get some Lalvin dry packs, Wyeast liquid and resell the same strands? For one, I'm sure that wouldn't set so well if you were found out. Two, I don't see how you could add any more value to the strain than what is already there. In your smaller production you wouldn't have as high of a profit margin as the big two because of the economy of scales.

At minimum I think you would need some lab equipment, a nice microscope, centrifuges, spectral analyzer, ect... That stuff aint cheap!
 

atreid

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The mistake is probably to try and sell at better prices than the big yeast providers. As a micro "yeaster", you should probably try to get novelty yeast strains or special blends to sell them at a higher profit margins. I don't see how you could profit otherwise (as KBentley said, no economy of scale).
 

barmyarmy

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The microbiology is simple. Take your original strain and split it up. Grow that for a few strains and add 1 vial of frozen. If you do it right 1 vial will last for years.
 

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