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Tech. Q. Master. Brew. Assoc. Am., April/May/June 1977, 14(2), 126-128. English

Pros and cons of pilot and full scale test brewing.

Heissinger, H.K.

It is often necessary to evaluate proposed changes in process and materials to determine any possible effects on flavour, processing variables and analytical factors. Each has many specific advantages and disadvantages. Pilot equipment is easier to control and will provide more easily repeatable results. However, not all phases of production can be duplicated in the proper proportion. Pilot brewing will mainly provide answers as to how analytical data will respond to a changed condition, but it is extremely hard to achieve taste and flavour characteristics comparable to regular production. Full scale test brews can be directly compared with regular production. However, repeatable results are harder to achieve due to numerous variables such as pumping times, temperature variations etc. Mixing of test beer with regular production, timing conflicts due to production requirements and operator errors can easily cause erroneous results. To obtain meaningful data full scale test brews normally require several repetitions.
Keywords: brewing equipment pilot plant survey