Great tasting beer is as easy as A, B, UV-C for Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Aquionics UV ensures product quality at California and North Carolina facilities
When it comes to ensuring a consistent beer taste, the Sierra Nevada Brewing Company in Chico, CA uses Aquionics’ UV technology in its process. UV-C to be precise. The UV-C part of the UV spectrum is highly effective at breaking down unwanted by-products from the water purification process, ensuring optimal beer taste at all times.
“The taste of our beer is a key selling point,” comments Aaron Porter, Sierra’s Plant Services Supervisor. “Water is the main ingredient of beer and, even though we have a great water source, by law it needs to be chlorinated prior to use. That’s where the Aquionics UV technology plays its part – UV has proved to be highly effective at destroying any residual chlorine remaining in the process post-treatment. In this way it ensures the consistent taste of our beer. We now have three Aquionics units preforming this role.
“As well as dechlorination, we also have an Aquionics unit installed on our de-areation (DA) skid,” added Aaron. “This is to help disinfect the water returning to the storage tank. It will also be used to destruct ozone that we use for sanitizing the DA system.”
In addition to these two applications, the brewery is planning to use UV as part of its water reclamation project, whereby water used for cleaning bottles and kegs will be disinfected and reused for landscape irrigation.
UV also has many other uses in the brewing, beverage and process industries, including the disinfection of municipal or private water supplies, de-aerated liquor (part of the high-gravity brewing process), clean-in-place (CIP) water, sugar syrups, sweeteners and yeast preparation areas.
“These applications are demonstrative of the unique ability of UV to perform many roles, including disinfection and chemical breakdown,” says Nancy Hatley, Aquionics’ Western Regional Manager. UV is probably the only technology that can perform all of these tasks.”
UV systems are easy to install, with minimum disruption to the plant. They need very little maintenance, the only requirement being replacement of the UV lamps every 12-18 months, depending on use. This is a simple operation that takes only a few minutes and can be carried out by general maintenance staff.
Feedback so far from Sierra Nevada has been very positive, with the company reporting excellent performance from the Aquionics UV systems. The reliability and versatility of the technology has prompted the brewery to commission two more Aquionics dechlorination units for its brand new facility in North Carolina.
“Sierra Nevada is a regional brewer that has had tremendous success over recent years. It also clearly has big ambitions – the new North Carolina brewery is testament to this,” added Nancy. “We’re delighted to have played a part – however small – in this success and wish the company much success in the coming years. If the taste of their beer is anything to go by, that success is guaranteed!”
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