Quick! Maltodextrin for sale at discount price…

We have one 25Kg bag of Maltodextrin available at a discount price, due to its past expiry date (best before is 30/06/18).

We’re offering a discount price of £2.45 per kg!

Maltodextrin is a malt derived polysaccharide which is unfermentable by brewers yeast and acts to increase the body and mouthfeel of a beer without adding any fermentable extract.

If you’re interested in purchasing this product, please contact us on sales@murphyandson.co.uk to make an order.

Wort’ The Risk

Additions to the Kettle – Safety Tips

As we know brewing is a fantastic industry with great people, art, science, creativity and flavour! Additions towards the end of the boil can include; flavoursome late hops, the all-important Protafloc, yeast nutrients and a wide range of sugars spices and speciality ingredients.

However, with any process involving vast quantities of boiling sugary liquid there are risks and it is worth taking some time to give some tips from our team’s collective experiences to make kettle additions as safe as possible.

There are a vast array of brew-kettle designs out there, so this is not an exhaustive list, but it should cover some of the keys points should you have to make additions through the manway door. Feel free to post any further insights you feel are valid.

  1. Make sure the heat source is off! This seems like an obvious one but with the hectic brewing schedules and multi-tasking that can go on in a brewery it is easily done on manual kits with no lock out protection.
  2. Linked to the one above, ensure that leaks or faulty valves do not make you think you have turned off the heat source when you haven’t.
  3. Staff Training, structured procedures, working instructions and relevant safety equipment. This not only helps protect the people in the brewery but also the business if an accident were to happen.
  4. Clean chimney flue, free of blockages!
  5. If possible mixing/agitation to prevent “heat pockets” these can be disturbed by the additions, leading to a boil over.
  6. Regular cleaning of the element: This should prevent uneven heating which can produce boil over issues, alongside which it’ll also save you a bit of money through greater energy efficiency and have wort beer quality benefits.
  7. Antifoam: As the name suggests using this will reduce the likelihood of bubbles forming leading to extra capacity, better hop utilisation, easier cleaning and counter intuitively better final beer foam as foam positive proteins are not wasted upstream in the process. This should not be relied upon by itself as a safety measure as the safety benefits are offset by the use of the extra capacity.
  8. Sacrificial/test additions: A small amount say 10% of the total additions can be added to reduce the severity of nucleation affects. The rest can be even added in small stages if required.
  9. Having an escape route! If a boil over was to happen, keeping access free and visible so that everyone can get out of the way.
  10. Sharing information and best practise with other brewers. Learning from mistakes is very powerful and being open and honest about accidents & near misses may very well help protect a brewer in the future

Author: Adam Johnson 

Headline image courtesy of the Younger Members Network – Institute of Brewing and Distilling.

Brut IPA you say?

There is no disputing that the India Pale Ale or IPA is a staple that’s here to stay. From its humble origins as a practical way to ship beer across the Empire to our modern craft interpretations, IPA has fast become a mainstay of every quality beer emporium. Spurred by the current Pied Piper of brewing: hops, drinkers are fast becoming used to and acquiring a taste for this lupulin driven excitement, whether it be a DIPA, Farmhouse, Belgian, Traditional, Black or New England, to name but a few. In addition to which, this lupelin furore is showing no sign of stopping! Enter Brut IPA, the new kid on the block. So, could we now be entering the era of the Brut IPA? Recent trends witnessed here at Murphys would suggest so, that Brut IPA is fast becoming the must brew style of 2018.

Unlike the name might suggest, this beer style has no connection with the cheap aftershave still available at a discount price from your closest Superdrug! In fact, its namesake is much more sophisticated, tasteful and considerably more expensive per bottle. We are of course talking about Champagne or more accurately the scale used to describe the sweetness of Champagne.

Picture courtesy of dracaenawines.com

As you will see, Brut is the second driest champagne available and it’s this dry palate that is the key weapon in the arsenal of this revered style (oh yes, there are of course Extra Brut IPA’s being brewed too). What else makes this beer stand out? You guessed it, hops by the bucket load! Lots and lots of juicy, fruity hop flavours but all from late additions; nobody likes their beer to be extra dry and bitter. Original gravities for this style typically range from the gentle 1045 up to 1070 and remember to keep the malt grist pale and simple. Though to achieve true Brut status you’ll need a low final gravity.

Origins of many modern beer styles are often shrouded in mystery, hearsay and myth. In contrast the Brut IPA has a largely undisputed founding brewery, with San Francisco’s Social Brewing leading the way in late 2017.  In the brewing industry’s true spirit of collaboration, their brewer, Kim Sturdavant fast shared the secrets of this new quaffable success with fellow local brewers and it’s from that pocket of California that word has spread.

At the risk of stirring the pot…

During our discussions about the content of this blog post we realised that, since 2012 Murphy and Son have already been supplying a UK brewery to aid in the production of something very similar! St Austell Brewery’s Big Job is a multi-award winning Double IPA with a wort of OG 1057 which attenuates right down to 998.5 and 7.2% ABV, balanced by a large dry hop addition this seems bang on for a Brut IPA to us! We’ll leave that thought with you.

So, how do we Brut-up an IPA?

Most brewers are turning to the power of enzymes, more specifically Amyloglucosidase (AMG to you and me).  This enzyme acts by removing glucose from dextrins / oligosaccharides in a step by step manner, working along the non reducing end by hydrolysing both linear α -1,4 and branching α- 1,6 bonds.  The removal of these dextrins eliminates any residual body and sweetness in the beer whilst providing extra fermentable glucose for the yeast!

AMG can be added in the mash to boost fermentability and extract, however, brewers of Brut IPA’s are choosing to add it directly to chilled wort (3-8g per hl) with rates dependant on required rate of attenuation.  Using this method, production of super-attenuated Brut IPA is easy, and thus making a final gravity of close to and below 1000 is achievable.

Top tip: Why not consider using sugars to raise the gravity of your brew?  Dextrose monohydrate will raise the gravity without adding any further or non-fermentable sugars, helping keep the beer dry without adding body or colour.

Next time you are looking to brew an IPA why not consider going Brut?

To discuss the use of AMG or any of our other enzyme products please contact our technical team techsupport@murphyandson.co.uk, like to learn more about our technical team? Read our blog on who’s who and who’s new.

Headline image courtesy of http://doctorale.com/en/big-job-attention-hops-attacks/46137 on Flickr

Co-authored by Iain Kenny and Mat Henney

Announcement: new and increased 9-month Super F shelf life and fining guide!

We are pleased to announce that the shelf life of our vegan fining Super F has increased from 6 months to 9 months!

As part of this, you will now receive Super F in green 25kg or 200kg drums and the shelf life starts from the point the product is manufactured and placed in said green drums on our site. The shelf life will, of course, always be clearly outlined on the product label.

Shelf life isn’t the only change Super F has seen of late. We’ve also made it available to purchase without an optimisation by our laboratory, although we still strongly recommend you carefully optimise before use! In aid of this, we thought it advantageous that we go through the basics of a successful Super F optimisation.

First of all, the materials you require to optimise are as follows:

  • 3L measuring jug
  • 500ml measuring jug
  • Pipette with 0.1 ml graduations
  • 5 x 500ml glass bottles
  • Refrigerator set to 4°C
  • Microscope kit and Haemocytometer

Super F Optimisation Method:

  • Set up the glass bottles with the specified dose rates and clearly label the bottles
  • Take a 2.5 L sample of beer post fermentation and perform a yeast count
  • Measure 500ml into each bottle and seal, invert three times to mix and refrigerate for 24 hours
  • Very carefully remove the beer from the fridge and set on a bench with a light source behind the samples
  • Select the rate which has the best clarity along with a compact sediment.
  • If you cannot measure haze it might be good to develop a grading system for your records e.g. A-F A=Brilliantly bright         F= Very Turbid/Dull
  • Yeast counts for the best sample can validate that the bulk of the yeast has been removed.

The recommendation for dose rates to optimise to are as follows:

Super F Dosage
(pints per barrel)
Dosage ml/HL Trial Dose ml/500ml Rate Guide
0 0 0 Control
0.17 60 0.3 Low
0.35 122 0.6 Low/medium
0.45 157 0.8 Medium/High
0.62 217 1.1 High

When using Super F we always recommend that you optimise regularly. For the majority we’ve found the best results to be between 0-5°C and when the product is used in conjunction with optimised auxiliary finings and carrageenan use. Last but not least, your yeast count should be 1-8 millioncells/ml of viable yeast.

Got a question about Super F we haven’t answered here? Email us on techsupport@murphyandson.co.uk

Who’s Who & Who’s New!

We’ve been shaking things up a bit here at Murphy & Son; expanding our warehouse, investing in new production equipment and ensuring our entire site is food grade standard. It’s a time of continuous progression, as our old strapline goes ‘advancing through technical expertise’ and as our new strapline denotes, it’s all about ‘Quality, Consistency & Support’.

As part of this, changes are also afoot in our technical team, so we thought we should update you all and introduce our latest recruits!  The team are all available via
techsupport@murphyandson.co.uk

Iain Kenny started with us last June 2017, and dived head first into his new role providing technical support for those of you based in the Midlands and much of Wales (anywhere between the M4 and M62, give or take). Iain comes to Murphys with a BSc Hons in Brewing and Distilling gained at Heriot-Watt University, including a placement at Tennants. Between then and now, Iain was Head Brewer for Kelham Island and owned and managed his own brewing and consultancy business, working with numerous breweries across South Yorkshire and the Midlands. With experience pretty much tailored for the role, it’s no wonder Iain’s fitted into work at Murphys so well!

Working alongside Iain is Nick Brading, who’s been an integral member of the Murphys team for many years now. You may well know Nick from his work in the export market, although Nick will now be focusing much of his efforts on supporting breweries in the North of England and Scotland and making his international ventures more occasional. In case you didn’t know, Nick is a bit of a genius and speaker extraordinaire, so we’d thoroughly recommend catching him talk should you have the opportunity. Before Murphys, Nick worked for Shipstones, Ruddles and Carlsberg International, oh and he’s a Master Brewer.

Our latest recruit to the technical team is Mat Henney. Mat comes to us with a broad range of experience, gained through his work as Brewer at Randalls Brewery (Guernsey), Second Brewer at Dartmoor Brewery and most recently Head Brewer at New Lion Brewery. Mat will be taking over from Adam Johnson as Technical Sales Rep for the South of England and very South of Wales. He has a BSc Hons & Dipl Brew training from the IBD and is on the cusp of completing the Master Brewer qualification. We’re very pleased to welcome Mat to our team, and have no doubt he’ll be an invaluable addition and instrumental in ensuring we continue to advance with you, the brewers, in mind.

Where’s Adam Johnson off to you say? He’s not leaving us, just moving a little further afield and will be our man on the ground in Europe! Adam will now be based out of Germany, so if you’re based in mainland Europe or Ireland and need technical support, Adam is your man! Adam’s has a BSc Hons & Dipl Brew from Heriot-Watt, and before Murphys worked for Carlsberg-Tetley, Belhaven Brewery and as Technical Brewer at St Austell brewery. Adam will be working closely with our Export Manager, Tom Wiszniewski, another new recruit who joined the company last year from a similar position as part of the medical industry. Tom is now our chief traveller, pursuing leads across the globe and already leading us to success. It also seems pertinent to mention our ventures in the US market as Murphy & Son Inc, which is being led by the brilliant Jamie Carmichael. Jamie is originally from Edinburgh, Scotland where he studied Brewing and Distilling at Heriot Watt and became a Watt Club Medal winner. Since then he’s worked in breweries far and wide, including Von Trapp (Vermont), Heather Ale (Scotland), Little Creatures (Australia) and Green Man (New Zealand), and has now settled in Massachusetts.

From globetrotting to a little closer to home, our onsite team are essential to our technical offering too. Hopefully you all know Frances Maud well, Fran is our Murphy HQ Technical Rep and always at the end of the phone ready to answer your questions (well during the working week that is). We’re also pleased to welcome two new managers to our onsite team. Richard Haywood joined us in July 2017 and is now our Head of Technical; we’re already seeing the benefits of his scrupulous and methodical approach! Before Murphys Richard worked for Bass/Molson Coors, starting his career there in the laboratories and then moving onto production management across the brewing process. In 2003 Richard qualified as a Master Brewer and then moved to the maltings plant as Quality Manager. Richard has been joined on the senior management team by our latest recruit, Brandon Critchell, who is our new Head of Sales. Previous to his role at Murphys Brandon was Area Manager for Marstons, so shares in our love of beer. Together with Chris Cleal, Head of Operations, Brandon and Richard will be streamlining our systems and improving customer service here at Murphys, under the leadership of our Managing Director Christine Fleming and Deputy Managing Director Charles Nicholds.

Phew! Think that just about covers it.

Murphy & Son are proud to be expanding our team so we can better support the beverage industry far and wide.

Low or no? The alcohol-free boom and why it’s showing no sign of going bust.

In partnership with CereX: Natural Cereal Extracts

From stouts with milk proteins for mouthfeel to ales composed from hop oils and malt extracts, specifically built stripping columns to boiling off the ethanol from the finished beer. There are an increasing number of brewers dipping their right toe and even diving head first into the field of NABLAB (non-alcoholic beer and low-alcoholic beer). And while the UK low/no market is still tiny in comparison to beer at large, or even Craft for that matter, representing less than 1% of total beer sales, its popularity is growing, especially among young drinkers. So, if you’ve already added an alcohol-free recipe to your repertoire then you’re totally on trend, you hipster you!

That’s right, the latest trend we’ve witnessed and which we think will only continue to gain momentum is the low percentage brew. We’re not saying that the rich, punchy and high ABV Craft 2/3 is going anywhere, or even that it’s under threat. Just, that trends like craft lager, clean (put an avocado on it) eating and vegan options are going to continue take an equal share of the limelight and are part of a trajectory towards further diversification into healthy NABLAB options. #DryJanuary (around the clock), or rather #TryJanuary – both are truly applicable here!

Say what now? Well, Heineken, Budweiser and San Miguel have all introduced 0.0% beers to the market and supported them with dedicated marketing campaigns for DryJanuary this year. AB InBev have even pledged that 20% of the beer they sell will be low or no by 2025, a big claim to make on a short-lived trend? Plus, BrewDog’s Nanny State has been a dependable part of their repertoire for many years, marketed initially as a reaction to the stink surrounding their 18% Tokyo, but as ever, devilishly ahead of the curve. Love it or hate it, NABLAB is more than just a fad and represents an opportunity for investment in a growing market, should you wish to take it.

Who cares? Well, if the brewers’ role is to meet customer demand (we know that’s not your only role really), then evidence strongly supports the existence of said demand for low or no. Recent research done by GlobalData shows a growing focus on healthy options and a parallel interest in lower alcohol alternatives. For instance, 38% of global consumers said health claims influence their choice of alcoholic drink. When looking at Great Britain in particular, the Office for National Statistics found that regular alcohol consumption is declining and teetotalism in those aged 16 to 44 is on the rise. A trend which is particularly prevalent among young people aged 16 to 24, who are less likely to drink than any other age group. The stereotype of the student weaving through life from party to party, punctuated only by hangovers and the odd deadline is something of the past! Rest in peace.

Looking for a catalyst, that moment to invest? Well, now really is the time! With the introduction of the ‘sugar tax’, the demand for an alternative to alcohol that won’t break the bank has never been higher. Ever winced at the cost of branded fizzy pop, marvelled at how your pint of orange juice and lemonade costs the same as the local real ale? Well, said conundrum bemoaned by teetotallers and designated drivers alike isn’t going anywhere. This is a call to arms brewers, we need you! There has got to be a better option.

We get it you say, we need to add a low or no brew to our range, can you get to the point and tell us how? There are many options available to the brewer looking to produce a final product for the low or no market.  You can start at the beginning of the process by limiting the malt/water ratio to produce a lower original gravity or by choosing lower fermentable brewing materials for lower overall ethanol content. There’s the options that have me searching for my copy of Cool Runnings (tenuous link, maybe, excellent film, certainly): the ‘cold contact’ method of pitching your yeast in wort at near freezing temps; the method of fermenting the ‘second runnings’ from a previous mash #ReduceReuseRecycle; or that of ‘crash cooling’ when you’ve reached your desired gravity and alcohol content. There are also several methods of removing ethanol (expensive equipment may be required) and even the option to, well, water things down. All these options have costs and complexities to consider and will ultimately affect the overall beer flavour and mouthfeel; the skill lies in reducing this effect as much as possible.

Seem a bit complicated? Well, when isn’t it? We think we might have the answer! Technically speaking there is no such thing as beer without alcohol, as beer contains alcohol by definition, so really what we’re discussing here is a non-alcoholic malt beverage or brew. When you think about it like this, you open up a whole new creative space, separate to your usual brewery output. This is where CereX comes in, a malt extract that is the perfect clear compound for no and low beverages and which can be used for colour, smell, mouthfeel, taste and nutritional content.

CereX is a super high value natural malt extract, produced with a brewer’s philosophy. It is made initially in the same way as beer, well up to the point of wort boiling, so it’s made entirely from malted barley and brewing water. This also means that mashing, lautering and wort boiling are all performed in a state-of-the-art plant with the same strict levels of quality control and led by a passionate team with expert knowledge of brewing. Win! The first divergence from the standard brewing process occurs when the boiled wort is pumped through a series of vacuum plate heat exchangers. This evaporates the water content; enriching and concentrating the wort until a thick wort syrup is created. This is the natural cereal extract: CereX. It is then filtered for stability and to remove proteins leached from the malt, and finally stored in tanks at around 30°C ready for packaging. Once packaged it has a shelf life of 12 months and is available in 20kg and 235kg, oh and also heated road tankers for the big boys. It’s sterile, oxygen-free and very tasty! Plus, the clarity and stability of the extract means it’s perfect for all sorts of beverages.

Sound good? It’s even better once you’ve got it in the brewhouse (obviously). CereX is essentially an extra yummy concentrated malt extract, which requires you to dilute it to a specific gravity, say 1.045°OG, and then add aroma, flavouring and/or colouring to create the beverage in your mind’s eye (oh and you can carbonate it too if you’d like). Popular additions that spring to mind are a caramel to darken the drink, coffee flavourings, hop oils, bitters and acids. We recommend that when making these additions you do it on the cold side, to avoid cooked flavours and loss of aroma. But you’re the artists – you know what to do!

The rationale behind our confidence in CereX is multifaceted. The quality of the product is undeniable, providing the assurance you need when embarking on a new project like an alcohol-free brew. What’s also incredible, is that this quality doesn’t require huge investment for your brewery. Our industry is always seeking innovation and efficiency and this product provides this in spades; it’s a flavoursome base with almost endless possibilities of blending without time-consuming low or no specific procedures! Furthermore, the key difference CereX offers to NABLAB’s made by other processes, is that it has never come into contact with alcohol or yeast, thus making it acceptable to Muslims, those with a yeast intolerance and in fact, anyone looking to avoid alcohol and/or yeast altogether. For this reason, CereX is hugely popular in certain parts of the Middle East and Africa. Oh and CereX has health giving properties too. That’s right, healthy beer! Apart from some sugar, it is high in vitamins, amino acids, salts and certain proteins, making it the refreshing healthy option for the pub-goers not partial to pop or soft drinks we’d been so aspiring to cater for. So healthy is beer brewed via this route that German Olympians have been choosing it as an alternative to sports drinks! (We were shocked too!) CereX really is a low-cost, low-tech means to compete with the Heinekens, InBevs and Carlsbergs of the NABLAB world! A foundation for flavour without alcohol that can contribute to both the development and improvement of any low or no product! Contact us on techsupport@murphyandson.co.uk if you’d like to learn more.

Looking for a bit of further reading? We’d recommend:

Have you heard? Our state-of-the-art warehouse racking system is live!

We are pleased to announce that our new, state-of-the-art pallet shuttle system – designed and installed by SEC Storage – is now live!

This new racking system was installed in our recently built chilled warehouse facility, and represents the continuation of our ongoing expansion plans which started back in 2017.

This semi-autonomous, pallet shuttle system represents a significant investment for Murphy & Son Ltd, and has more than doubled the existing pallet capacity that a standard racking solution could have provided us with.

We are now able to fit over 280 pallets into a 5,000 sq/ft space in the chilled warehouse facility thanks to this intelligent, high-density racking solution.

This project adds towards Murphy & Son Ltd’s ambition to further grow and innovate our business moving forward, throughout 2018 and beyond, and we look forward to seeing how the system will help to maximise the efficiency of our warehouse operation moving forward.

We would like to thank the team at SEC Storage for their fantastic work on the project.

SEC Storage is an award winning pallet racking, shelving systems and warehouse storage solutions provider. Find out more: www.sec-storage.co.uk

Lager, Lager, Lager

When some very enterprising German brewers decided to store their beer in the frozen Bavarian Alps through the summer time in the early nineteenth century, little did they know of the impact there new “Lager” creation would have on the world of beer.  Some of these brewers were so moved by the potential of this wonderous brew that they started to leave their Bavarian breweries to spread the word around Europe and refine this new brewing art.  Many on the continent were so moved by the potential of Lager and the Lagering technique that many brewing enterprises started making related products of their own giving rise to styles like the Red Lagers of Vienna.  Much credit also needs to be given to Bavarian brewer Josef Groll who, in 1842, took the brave step of heading to a little-known brewing town called Pilsen in the Czech Republic to try out his new lager recipe.  Following on from this original Pilsner (Pilsner Urquell), innovations and developments in the likes of glass bottle manufacture and refrigeration coupled with a good helping of migration meant lager quickly became a worldwide success.

Lager is as popular as ever and whether its Pilsner, Helles, Vienna Lager or Schwarzbier you are considering brewing, Murphy and Son is the place for everything you need for a flavoursome quality lager.

Liquor Treatment

Our much treasured, annual free of charge liquor analysis now includes a suggested liquor treatment for lager style beers as standard.  If you have not had you liquor checked for a while and you are a Murphys customer please send 50ml of untreated water to our lab for us to check out for you.

Our suggested lager treatment aims for a brewing liquor with adequate calcium for good brewing enzyme activity, yeast flocculation and oxalate and protein precipitation whilst mimicking the low sulphate and chloride levels of Munich and Pilsen for a crisp, light flavour.  This is best achieved with suitable additions of lactic acid to reduce alkalinity with low levels of calcium sulphate and calcium chloride to increase calcium ions.

Malt

Our new closer ties with Simpsons Malt means that we now have in stock ready for dispatch Finest Lager Malt (crushed).  This highest quality malt is slightly higher in Total Nitrogen and slightly under-modified so head / foam and mouthfeel will survive the lagering process. To add to this quality base malt, we can also supply a range of crystal malts, caramalt, wheat malt and Vienna malt (all crushed) direct from our warehouse.

Hops

Whether you are looking for traditional varieties of Noble Czech Saaz and German Hallertau hops, or looking to add a dry hop twist to your brew with new world hop pellets, we are very proud of our close relationship with Charles Faram which means we can supply the best hops around to suit your requirements.

Yeast

On the dried yeast front we are pleased to hold stock of Lallemand Diamond Lager Yeast and three different Fermentis Lager Yeasts.  We also supply wet yeast cultures from the National Collection of Yeast Cultures (NCYC) which houses a vast range of lager strains originating from all over the world which can add the precise character you are looking for.

Flavour control

Diacetyl and Sulphur flavours can be problematic in lagers to help keep things under control we have the perfect products to help.

When added to wort at the start of fermentation, the enzyme Alpha Acetolactate Decarboxylate (ALDC) acts on the diacetyl precursor alpha acetolactate converting it to acetoin.  If alpha acetolactate is not present diacetyl can’t be formed so no buttery off flavours in your beer and conditioning time can be reduced.

To help keep sulphur off flavours out of your beer, Murphys have developed two zetolite products for the job.  Zetolite 65, when added to wort at the start of fermentation will prevent the formation of sulphur off flavours whilst if you notice the undesirable sulphurous aromas in your fermented product, the addition of Zetolite 63 will stimulate your yeast to reduce H2S and DMS aromas during maturation.

Don’t forget…

…an exuberant bright appearance is important with lagers and at Murphys we carry a huge range of finings and stabilisers to help achieve the desirable crisp look from brewers clarex to Super F, Silica and PVPP products, the Murphys Technical team is on hand to get this just right for you.  PGA is also a handy product to help achieve a perfect looking head on dispense.

For further information on any of the products discussed or for general advice and trouble-shooting with lager brewing please contact the Murphys Technical Team.

We Sell Key Kegs!!!!

Author: Iain Kenny, Technical Sales Representative, Murphy & Son Ltd

Contact the technical team on techsupport@murphyandson.co.uk

Murphy Training Days 2018

We are happy to announce the dates and initial details of our training days for 2018!

Murphy Training Days take place between 9.30am and 4.30pm, cost £95 +VAT and include lunch, with a maximum of 15 places available on each. In addition to which, each delegate will receive a USB containing the presentations from the day and a certificate.

All our training takes place at our historic Prince of Wales Brewery site in Nottingham and offers the opportunity to discuss and learn more about a particular element of the brewing process with members of our technical team. Murphy Training Days are pitched at a beginner to intermediate level and designed for those looking to expand or refresh their brewing knowledge, with opportunity for questions and in-depth discussion throughout.

To check availability and reserve your place, please email events@murphyandson.co.uk and include the training date(s) you’re interested in, your email address, full name, brewery name and a contact number (as relevant).

Once booked you will receive a confirmation email and be contacted by a member of our Customer Service Team to organise payment. Closer to the date we will circulate a detailed agenda for the day and all the logistical information you might require, but please don’t hesitate to send a question our way should you have one in the meantime.

Murphy Training Day 1 – IMPROVING THE STABILITY OF BEER

AVAILABLE DATES: Thursday 22nd February or Thursday 26th July 2018.
Led by Master Brewer and Technical Sales Representative Nick Brading.

This course will cover liquor composition and effect on stability, brewhouse control, carrageenan, isinglass and auxiliary finings. The training will also delve into the importance of stable beer in cask preparation and small pack production. Providing all the basics needed to brew quality beer with confidence.

Murphy Training Day 2 – YEAST: MANAGING YOUR BREWING PARTNER

AVAILABLE DATES: Thursday 22nd March or Thursday 30th August 2018.
Led by Technical Brewer and Technical Sales Representative Adam Johnson.

There is no beer without yeast! Our yeast training provides an introduction to this vital microorganism, options available to the modern brewer and a guide to using and handling yeast in the brewery. This will provide a general overview as well as a more in depth discussion of the fermentation process, handling live yeast, maintenance and microbiology and last but most certainly not least, brewery hygiene.

Murphy Training Day 3 – LABORATORY TECHNIQUES IN BREWING

AVAILABLE DATES: Thursday 26th April (FULLY BOOKED! Waiting list only) or Thursday 27th September 2018.
Led by Master Brewer and Technical Manager Richard Haywood.

The day will include an examination of water analysis and its impact on beer quality, from core principles to specialist analysis and application. After this the team will focus on the application of chemistry and microbiological testing methods in the brewery, and finally, a demonstration of how to perform a finings optimisation. Come away with the skills to create consistent beer with confidence.

This training features practical activities in our lab, so is limited to a maximum of 10 attendees only.

Murphy Training Day 4 – QUALITY MANAGEMENT FOR BREWERIES

AVAILABLE DATES: Thursday 24th May or Thursday 25th October 2018.
Led by Master Brewer and Technical Manager Richard Haywood.

This days training will provide an overview of a Quality Management System, thus arming the brewer ready for their initial foray with the subject. Also covered will be HACCP, due diligence programs and last but not least, SALSA and legal requirements. Come armed with your questions, as they’ll be lots of time to discuss and answer these throughout.

Murphy Training Day 5 – THE BASICS OF PRODUCTION FOR KEG, CAN AND BOTTLE

AVAILABLE DATES: Thursday 28th June or Thursday 29th November 2018.
Led by Technical Brewer and Technical Sales Representative Iain Kenny.

The day looks at the central role of stable beer in keg, can and bottle production and the practical techniques that you can apply to help ensure this. Also covered will be an introduction to the different carbonation, filtration and filling methods available, both as a starting point to begin or an aid to refine in-house production. Advice on selecting the right contract packager and further insight from the team at Applied Minerals will also feature.

If you require that we come to you and/or tailor the day to your particular requirements, then we recommend you request a Murphy Master Class. Our master classes range from a presentation to your staff at your brewery on any of the subjects featured in our training, right through to a full days walk through and detailed assessment of your process. Simply email events@murphyandson.co.uk to find out more.

What should you expect from this year’s malt specifications?

We’ve been discussing the expected malt specifications for the coming year with our malt suppliers and wanted to feed back so you can prepare and tweak your recipes as required.

The malt nitrogens coming into breweries with the new seasons malt are likely to be higher than usual, at around 1.7%. The winters are not expected to be quite as high, but are still above average, predicted at up to 1.5%. This is a result of environmental factors, as last year saw low rainfall which made it harder for the barley to establish properly. Blame the British weather, it’s a national habit and we brewers are no different. You can however, prepare for this and if you need any technical support in doing so, we’re always on hand. The key implications revolve around your use of copper and auxiliary finings, the rates of which will need to be reoptimised once malt is in breweries and will likely increase. You can expect to see the first malts of this harvest in breweries across the country from mid-February onwards.

Could do with a bit more information on the matter? No problem!

It starts with the farmers, who sow different varieties of malting barley in autumn and early winter, known as “winters” and again in spring, known as “springs”, both of which are harvested from early July onwards. The latter are becoming more popular as they tend to be easier to grow but do require more fertiliser to get a decent yield by harvest time. Winters don’t require as much fertiliser making them cheaper for the farmer but extract value to the brewer tends to be less.

In brewing, we refer to the percentage of protein present in the malt as percentage nitrogen, it is quoted on malt analyses and used as a price guide and quality indicator. For example, feed barleys have a high protein content to feed the animals. Brewers however, want nitrogens to be lower, at around 1.4-1.5%. This provides enough yeast growth, flavour and beer foam without any substantial problems with haze, stability and excess yeast growth, above these levels and the later can become an issue. There is therefore, always a focus on this parameter at harvest and purchase time.

How come the percentage nitrogen is predicted as being higher in British malt this year?

The issue is in fact that of last year, where we saw a prolonged dry winter and spring in the main growing regions of the UK, resulting in crops not establishing well. To help crops along, farmers spread higher amounts of fertiliser which in turn pushed the nitrogens up. This is because the fertiliser is taken up by the growing plant and deposited in the developing ears of corn which are the grains harvested as barley for the malt crop. Had they not done this, the crop may well have failed altogether, something which did happen in a small number of districts resulting in some shortage too. The maltsters work with what they get off the fields, blending barleys to get an overall consistency which they can sell to brewers. However from a brewer’s perspective, with already high nitrogens and a limited supply, the quality of malt coming onto the market is weaker when compared to the previous years’ crop. Therefore, the forecast is less stable beer.

As brewers there are various techniques at our disposal to control protein (nitrogen) in the brewing process, and this is where we at Murphys specialise! Carrageenan and auxiliary finings are both process aids that remove this protein. It follows therefore, that brewers will require more of these products to treat the higher nitrogen malt expected this year. Something which we can support with our optimisation services and technical expertise, provided to you by a team of master brewers. Choosing Murphys will be an invaluable decision in 2018.

Like to perform your own optimisations? We’ve just the kit you need!

The Murphy Copper Finings Optimization Kit, which contains all the equipment required, as well as documentation on how to perform your own optimisations.