Brewing Raw Materials and Wort Production
This module focuses on the raw materials, practice and processes used to manufacture wort in a modern brewery. It develops understanding of the key quality factors of the principal raw materials and how these impact on the quality of wort produced in the brewing process. You will develop knowledge and specialist skills related to the unit operations used in wort production. Learn about how the technologies are controlled to meet the operational objectives of a modern brewhouse such as:
- production schedule
- wort strength and fermentability specified for a brand
- meeting environmental targets through minimising inputs of energy and water.
Beer Finishing and Packaging
This module teaches the biological, chemical and engineering processes that are involved in transforming fermented beer into a wide range of finished beers, as well as the principles and practice of packaging beers in small-pack and large-pack formats. Key topics include:
- flavour maturation and allied industrial practices
- beer stabilisation to prevent non-biological hazes
- beer filtration, carbonation, packaging and pasteurisation
You will learn theoretical and legal aspects of packaging, together with consideration of the design and operation of modern high speed packaging lines.
Brewery Yeast Management
This module considers brewing yeast management in relation to brewery fermentations. You are introduced to scientific principles and their relevance to industrial practices:
- Brewing taxonomy
- Brewing yeast cell biology
- Brewing yeast genetics
- Brewing yeast biochemistry
- Brewing yeast replication and growth
- Yeast culture maintenance and supply
- Methods of analysis (genetic, biochemical and physiological)
- Brewing yeast propagation and pitching
Fermentation and yeast handling
This module considers brewing fermentations and the importance of yeast within the process. It considers:
- pitching and yeast quality
- fermentation and flavour metabolism
- fermentation systems and operations
- yeast flocculation, cropping and storage
Operational practice and challenges as well as potential innovative technologies are discussed.
Brewery Operations and Beer Design
This module covers topics related to brewery operations at industrial and craft level. You will develop an understanding of brewery design and layout, and the engineering principles involved in selection of equipment and construction materials. You will learn how to operate a brewery in compliance with relevant legal requirements (UK). A further key objective of this module is to train you to be proficient in beer design. The necessary skills and calculations are taught and then assessed through an innovative beer design project which is conducted in small teams.
Beer Analysis and Quality Management
Development of the key chemical & physical properties of beer which determine its’ quality & the analytical techniques which are used to measure them. When & where in the process should measurements be taken using a Brewery Analysis Plan and how are these measurements integrated into the necessary Brewery Quality Systems?
This module considers the occurrence, frequency and biology of non-brewing microorganisms that are associated with spoilage during the brewing process or the final product. The impact of microorganisms on process and beer will also be considered. You will be introduced to:
- Spoilage microorganisms associated with the brewing process and final beer product
- Sampling, detection and identification of brewery microorganisms
- Disinfection of brewery yeast
- Cleaning- in – place (CIP) operations
- The principles and practice of brewery hygiene
Beer Flavour Development and Sensory Analysis
Flavour quality across the brewing process, examining the key materials, processes & quality parameters which influence beer flavor from grain to glass. Develops understanding of multisensory flavor perception & theoretical aspects of the sensory evaluation of beer.
Beer flavour development:
- Key components of beer flavour (volatile / non-volatile flavour components & balance; sweetness-bitterness balance; chloride-sulfate ratio; trigeminal effects: temperature/ carbonation; mouthfeel (e.g. beer foam, viscosity) influence of pH; multisensory considerations). Interactions between the senses.
- Range of beer styles and their flavour characteristics.
- Development & control of key beer flavour characters or off-notes throughout the brewing process.
- Trouble-shooting flavour defects in beer
- Flavour stability / staling of beer during storage: oxidation/ maturation. To include methods for monitoring beer staling; current theories of beer flavour stability; separate contributions of materials & process to flavour stability; potential markers for beer staling
- Theory of sensory analysis, designing and running sensory trials
- Facilities and recruitment of assessors
- Introduction to main sensory methodologies (e.g. discrimination testing/ quantitative methods/ descriptive/ profiling, threshold determination/ hedonic tests)
- Beer flavour wheel/ QDA of beer
- Ethical considerations/ consumer testing and behaviour.
- Experimental design and analysis of sensory data; ANOVA
Sustainable Beer Production
The sustainability of production is a critical topic for any brewer. This module will examine resource usage in brewing, with a focus on key performance indicators such as specific energy and water usage. The use of life cycle analysis (LCA), carbon foot printing and water foot printing as tools to achieve a more sustainable process will be discussed. There is also a focus on brewing co-product streams (e.g. effluent, recovered beer, spent grain, spent yeast, trub, cleaning-in-place residues and kieselguhr) and how these can be reduced and/or treated to minimise their impact on the environment.
Other topics include the utilisation of solid waste (spent grains, yeast and hops) to produce co-products and approaches to reduce packaging, which represents a significant part of the carbon footprint of beer.
Brewing Research Project (full-time)
You will be required to carry out a practical project in brewing science which involves the application of contemporary concepts, theories and methodologies relevant to a selected topic. Content will be agreed with the course supervisor (and where appropriate industrial supervisor) appointed to the project to ensure that the academic content is suitable for a postgraduate course. Ideally the project will be carried out as a placement in industry to address a real situation; however, where this is not feasible or dependent upon the requirements of the research project, a laboratory-based project may be undertaken. Although an individual responsibility, the project will usually involve working with others and may be part of a team project (e.g. developing, brewing and marketing a new beer brand in collaboration with a local brewer).