It seems like every Thursday I nearly forget to write a blog post... Probably because it is always a big study day before a test.
Today was a harder day than the others this week. We talked about beer spoilage organisms, how to detect them, what they produce, and what effects they have on beer. It has always been funny to me when people say that you have to be extremely clean when you brew or else it could make you sick. I've always told people that you will only get sick from drinking too much of it... Just like you would from any non-contaminated beer.
Today, we brushed upon that subject when our professor reassured us that no known human pathogens can survive in beer. For several reasons, beer is a poor environment for pathogens, or any bacteria for that matter. Low pH levels, carbonation, alcohol, and the preservative nature of hops all help to make beer a relatively stable product biologically. Unfortunately, there is still some bacteria and wild yeast that can effect beer flavor, aroma, and body. So while the contaminants will not make you sick, they can make beer taste gross.
After class, I had the opportunity to talk with my professors one on one. We got to discuss various issues that I have encountered at Blue Pants and how to avoid making the same mistakes in the future. It seems like every day, I learn something new that we can improve, or sometimes, change altogether. I'm only a third of the way done with the course, but I have learned a LOT in the last month.