The perfect pint and how to achieve it

There are many elements to delivering the perfect pint. Whether it’s from the very beginning in the brewing process or right through to pouring it into the most perfectly formed glass. 

Whilst beer might be considered a simple concept with it’s production coming from the fermentation of hopped malt extracted from barley and other grains of choice, it’s actually highly complex with a mixture of compounds including sugars, proteins, acids, alcohols and ketones. This whole process is scientific and obviously designed to bring the drinker their most desired flavour and aroma. 

But what happens when this process of beer brewing goes wrong or your brewing team want to test the quality of their product, improve the flavour or entice the drinker with a better aroma? 

A lot of this can be detected and improved, reducing brewing time and production costs with the analysis of volatile organic compounds found in the beer. Imspex Diagnostics has award-winning technology with the ability to characterise VOCs in beer brewing, before, during and after fermentation to understand quality control processes and the impact of VOCs in product development. 

Flavourspec uses a GC-IMS system designed to analyse headspace of a liquid to trap and extract VOCs from a beer sample and deliver them for separation, identification and quantification. It has a high throughput capability, is easy to use, is extremely sensitive and provides rapid analysis building databases and characterising peak profiles. This additional knowledge in your quality control processes will see no end of benefits. In particular, the quantification of vicinal diketones will ensure reproducible beer quality and the machine is small and portable enough to use on site at your brewing premises. 

The Gas Chromatography (GC) coupled with Ion Mobility Spectrometry (IMS) combines high selectivity with ultrahigh sensitivity producing accurate results. This software quantifies single marker compounds, whilst additional software plug-ins detect new compounds or concentration differences between existing compounds. Results are based on a reference standard that benchmarks the quality of a sample.

There are numerous benefits involved in analysing VOCs in beer brewing including:

  • Fast return on investment
  • Enhanced productivity
  • More information about your product quality
  • Less bench space required
  • Reducing brewing time
  • Reducing production costs
  • Reproducible quality

Flavourspec can be used for a number of different food and beverage product development projects including testing the origins of location dependent ingredients for things like Champagne, tea or olive oil. Flavourspec has been used in a number of client uses to date including:

  • Matrix impact on flavour development of chocolate
  • Deterioration of fried products and frying oil
  • Differentiation of rice varieties
  • Quality optimisation of e cigarettes
  • Expansion of milk and dairy product ranges

You can read more about the applications in another blog of ours here.

If you are a large scale brewer or small craft brewery looking to improve quality control processes and want to gain more knowledge around VOCs in product development and VOCs in beer brewing, then we’d love to help you with your projects. You can contact us here.