P-55. Evaluation of pectin application as a stabilizing and fining agent for the brewing process

Presenter: Thomas Kunz, Technische Universität Berlin, Institute of Food Technology and Food Chemistry, Chair of Brewing Science, Berlin, Germany
Coauthors: Gunnar Dingel, Kerstin Rudolph, and Frank-Jürgen Methner, Technische Universität Berlin, Institute of Food Technology and Food Chemistry, Chair of Brewing Science, Berlin, Germany

Fining agents are used to improve the filtration performance and reduce the production time of clear and bright beers, wines, and juices. Established fining agents like isinglass or gelatin are animal derived, and due to their allergenic potential, labeling is mandatory. In the literature pectin is described as a possible non-allergenic, plant-derived alternative to conventional fining agents. The aim of this study was to evaluate the application of pectin as a fining agent in the brewing process and to get a deeper insight into the mechanism of flocculation. Furthermore, the stabilizing effect of an aqueous pectin solution that contains sodium citrate, citric acid, and potassium metabisulfite was investigated to verify the possible suitability of pectin as a stabilizing agent as described in the literature. Lastly, a potential concept for the use of pectin was created. The results reveal that a pectin solution without additives does not increase the colloidal stability of beer by the removal of haze active polyphenol-protein compounds as described in the literature. Rather, the additives used, such as citric acid and particularly SO2, are responsible for a higher colloidal stability by increasing oxidative stability. Nevertheless, the suitability of pectin as a fining agent in the brewing process could be clearly verified. The efficiency of clarification depends on the pectin type used described by the degree of esterification, respectively amidation and the ratio of the beverage matrices (pH, AE, Ca2+). Due to these complexities it is difficult to choose the right pectin for a new beer matrix without a testing method. For the creation of a potential concept for the pectin application in the brewing process and for the assessment of the fining suitability of pectins in a given beer matrix it was necessary to develop a laboratory quick test. Through the application of pectin two key factors of filtration, flow rate and filtrate haze, could be improved significantly. Lower filtrate haze did not lead to significantly better colloidal stability, but the possible reduction of filtration time by about 33% is emphasized. Residual galacturonic acid was not detectable (IC) in the final beer, which indicates that pectin is completely removed after filtration. With the right application of pectin in the brewing process and further optimization, pectin seems to be an efficient option to the established fining agents used in the brewing process.

After qualifying as a certified technician in preservation engineering (1991–1993), Thomas Kunz completed his basic studies in chemistry at the University of Applied Sciences, Isny (1994–1995), and his basic studies in food chemistry at Wuppertal University (1995–1998), before starting to study food technology at the University of Applied Sciences, Trier (1998–2002). After graduating, he worked as a chartered engineer in the area of ESR spectroscopy at the Institute of Bio Physics at Saarland University (2002–2004). Since 2005, he has been employed as a Ph.D. student at the Research Institute of Brewing Sciences, Berlin Institute of Technology (Technische Universität Berlin). His main research focus lies in analyzing radical reaction mechanisms in beer and other beverages using ESR spectroscopy.

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