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Electron Beam Processing on Raw Grains Used in Wheat Beer Production
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One of the key obstacles encountered in the beer brewing industry is the microbial contamination of raw grains used in the production of beer. The barley and wheat grains used in the brewing industry are vulnerable to both bacterial and fungal contaminants. These contaminants are capable of producing defects and inconsistencies in both the quality and safety of the finished beer. Electron beam (eBeam) processing has been proven to lower the natural biological load found in barley grains, however, its effects on wheat grains used for brewing beer are known to lesser extent. Due to the growing popularity of wheat beers amongst consumers, there has been an increase of wheat production for brewing purposes, which may lead to an increase of microbial contamination of wheat crops. eBeam processing may be an efficient technology for reducing microbial contaminants in grains used for wheat beer production. This study will use raw grain samples which will be tested for microbial bioburden (mold and yeasts) and evaluated for “germinative energy” before and after eBeam treatment. The processed grains, along with a control (untreated) group, will then be malted and used to produce multiple batches of a standard wheat beer which will be tested for quality and compared. The hypothesis is that, if the raw grains are eBeam processed at doses between 0 to 12 kGy, there should be a significant reduction of biological contaminants without a significant decrease in the grains malting quality, so as to produce an acceptable wheat beer.
Ochoa, Daniel C (2016). Electron Beam Processing on Raw Grains Used in Wheat Beer Production. Undergraduate Research Scholars Program. Available electronically from