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Master Brewers Association of the Americas > BREWING RESOURCES > Ask the Brewmaster > Posts > Pectin build up problems
August 25
Pectin build up problems

​Q:  Is pectin build-up a problem for kegs or bottle fillers used to package cider?

A:  Pectin is found in fruits where it is part of the cell wall material.  It is a complex polysaccaride and forms a jell. There is very little available data on how to deal with pectin build-up on filling equipment in packaged cider, however many cider makers will use a pectinase enzyme to break it down and eliminate it from being a problem.  For cider makers who do not treat the pectin with an enzyme and package unfiltered product pectin build up can be an issue in both kegs and fillers.  I asked Joe Dirkson (Ecolab) and Dana Johnson (Birko) to weigh in on this. Their consensus is to use a heavier caustic concnetration (up to 4%) with an oxidizer additive to help break up the pectin.  They both preferred a hydrogen peroxide additive.  The additive has a short life in the caustic and must be injected in small amounts at regular increments to be effective and to keep a concentration between 1000-5000 ppm.

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