Beer brewing

beer process

Beer brewing

  • The name beer is given to non-distilled alcoholic beverages are made from partially germinated cereal grains, known as malt.
  • They include ales, lagers and stouts, which normally contain 3–8% (v/v) ethanol. 
  • The other main ingredients are hops (giving beer a characteristic aroma and flavour), yeast and water.

The brewing process is mainly divided into four main stages:-

  1. Malting
  2. Mashing and wort preparation
  3. Yeast fermentation
  4. Post-fermentation

The beer brewing process


  • Malting is the partial germination of cereal grain for six–nine days to make a malt.
  • This is the first beer ingredient and contains mainly starch, some protein and hydrolytic enzymes.
  • Malted barley is predominantly used, however beers are also made with malted wheat, occasionally malted oats and even malted sorghum.

Mashing and wort preparation:

  • Mashing and wort preparation includes the production of the aqueous fermentation medium, otherwise
    called as wort.
  • It contains fermentable amino acids, sugars and other nutrients, and is prepared by solubilizing malt components through the action of endogenous hydrolytic enzymes.
  • In most countries, a proportion of adjuncts are now also added, which are unmalted cereal and non-cereal starch sources, and sugar syrups.
  • The resulting liquid wort is then ‘sterilized’ by boiling; at the same time hops are added to impart their bitter flavour and characteristic aroma.
  • Overall, wort preparation takes approximately 5–8 hr.

Yeast fermentation:

  • Yeast fermentation is a non-aseptic batch process that uses a starter culture of a selected brewing strain of Scerevisiae.
  • The inoculated wort undergoes an alcoholic fermentation to produce ethanol, CO2 and minor
    metabolites that contribute to flavour and aroma.
  • Fermentations usually last for two to seven days depending upon the type of beer being produced.


  • Post-fermentation treatments are conducted to mature or condition the new beer to make it ready for consumption, which may take from one to several weeks.
  • The raw materials, excluding hops, the preparation of the wort and the yeast fermentation, are essentially the same for the production of both whisky and malt vinegar.
  • However, the major objectives are somewhat different. For whisky and vinegar production, the main aim is to maximize alcohol production prior to the respective steps of distillation and acetification.
  • In beer brewing, ethanol production by itself is rather less crucial, as development of sound flavour profile and other quality factors is equally important.
  • Traditionally, all necessary enzyme activities for the process were provided by the malt, which generates the wort, along with yeast enzymes, that convert wort components to ethanol, CO2 and flavour compounds.
  • However, commercial enzymes are now employed when raw materials are enzyme deficient, or to produce novel products, or act as aids in processing and in product stabilization.

Beer brewing


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