With the can craze in full swing we have more and more customers wanting to add the canning module to their MicroBottler, either when purchasing new or as an addition to their existing machine. We have the only system on the market that allows this, and we are quick to oblige them. Seaming cans however is not nearly as simple as crown capping bottles. Variations in cans and can ends require some minor adjustments at times and unfortunately the only way to truly know if your seams need adjustment is to cut them open and have a look. This will require you to perform measurements and use tools you are not familiar with but with some study and some practice you can handle this. The internet is full of information on can seam inspection and, like any information gleaned from the internet, you should be sure to apply your common sense and verify it from several sources before taking it as gospel. Since can specs and lots of inspection information is readily available, I will just run down the way we inspect seams, which we think is a pretty no-nonsense system that anyone can do with a little practice.
Dissolved Oxygen (or D.O.) is flat out the biggest enemy of packaged goods. If D.O. levels are high enough, beverages can take on an off taste, continue fermenting in the container, or even spoil in some situations. This is called oxidization of the product. D.O. is measured in Parts Per Billion (P.P.B.) which is a number a little difficult to get your head around just how small that is. I will be discussing what is referred to as total package D.O. which is the D.O. level in the package when it is complete and ready for sale but be aware that some D.O. comes into the process with your beverage. All beverages have some level of D.O. in them. This is because of oxygen that existed in the water and/or some other ingredients that they were made of. Fermentation reduced D.O. because the microbes consume the oxygen and replace it with CO2, but typical fermentation cycles will not remove 100% of the D.O.
If you have been searching for a bottling/canning solution, you have undoubtedly been learning all sorts of new terms and trying to sort out machine features that have you a little confused. One of these new concepts you are trying to get your head around is probably “Counterpressure” and Counterpressure (also known as isobaric) type filling. Counterpressure filling is the most reliable way to fill any vessel with carbonated liquid. While some carbonation levels can be filled at atmospheric pressure if they are kept cold enough during the process, counterpressure filling can reliably handle a wider range of carb levels and temperatures. I have even heard stories of people buying an atmospheric filling machine, only to be told they must change their products carbonation level to use it. Why would you buy a packaging line that asks that of you?
Can Shortages and How They Affect You.
If you have been packaging in cans or if you are trying to get started with it, you certainly are aware that there is now a serious can shortage. It is a worldwide problem that will likely be blamed, at least partially, on Covid19 but let’s face it we have eyes and can see that there are just a ton of craft beverage makers either brand new and packaging in cans, or switching over from bottles to cans. Whatever the cause, it has created a terrific problem for can manufacturers that they will most likely remedy by ramping up production as soon “they can” (sorry, dad jokes are a standard feature here). In the meantime, you are left to deal with the inconvenience of trying to source cans for your canning, where you can (OK I’m starting to annoy myself……)
Keg Daisy Chaining:
While filling cans or bottles directly from the tank eliminates some unneeded work (kegging, keg washing, handling kegs etc.) sometimes it just doesn’t work out that you are ready to fill when the tank is full, so you find yourself needing to fill from kegs. This is no problem at all for the Microbottler system, in fact- it’s what we originally designed it for.
Our DK Team had a successful demo with breweries and wineries at Fleur de Lis Brewworks in Seneca Falls, NY on April 4th, 2018.
We all know someone who’s a big craft beer lover and you might want to get them a gift that goes along with their passion for beers. But what do you get? With so many gift ideas out there it might be hard to choose a favorite. Here’s a list of craft beer gift ideas that we recommend and wouldn’t mind getting ourselves.
With cold brew coffee popularity on the rise, more and more coffee brewers are bottling coffee products on the market. Coffee connoisseurs are loving the variety of iced coffees and cold brewed coffees on the market, many of them coming from small, local coffee makers.
If you’ve been paying attention to the beer industry in the past few years, you’ve probably noticed that some beer producers are starting to gravitate towards packaging their beers in cans rather than in bottles.
They say if you choose a job that you love, you will never work a day in your life. If you’re a home brewer, expanding your hobby into a profitable business is one way you can ensure that the work you do to earn a living will never feel like work.
A few months ago, our good friends at Argyle Brewing Company were featured in Edible Capital District Magazine, a local magazine that covers the food scene throughout the Albany-Saratoga Region. The article, titled “The Hometown Heroes of Argyle Brewing Company,” tells the story of Argyle Brewing Company, a small upstate New York brewery in Greenwich that focuses on using the best local ingredients to craft delicious locally-sourced beers.
We are looking forward to The CRAFT BREWERS CONFERENCE next week, April 9-11th in Denver! Our team is ready for a busy Monday of travel and set up at the convention center. Then the fun begins! Catching up with our customers and meeting new brewers is always a blast during the tradeshow and festivities Tuesday through Thursday.
We are excited to join the USACM in Chicago for CiderCon February 6-8th! Craft cider is an exciting and growing industry that we are proud to be a small part of. We look forward to meeting even more cider makers and helping them bottle, cap and cork their ciders with the MicroBottler.
MicroBottler at Craft Brewers Conference 2018
The DK Team is excited to be a part of The Brewer’s Association Craft Brewer’s Convention for the second year in a row. We had a great time in D.C. last year and look forward to Nashville April 30-May 3, 2018. Join us for some fun in Music City as we promote the MicroBottler at Craft Brewers Conference 2018.