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General Category => Ingredients => Topic started by: showgun410 on November 05, 2012, 01:30:15 PM

Title: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: showgun410 on November 05, 2012, 01:30:15 PM
I have some HOP pellets left over, is it best to store them in the refrigerator or the freezer?
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: hopfenundmalz on November 05, 2012, 01:38:26 PM
I have some HOP pellets left over, is it best to store them in the refrigerator or the freezer?

Freezer. Vacuum packed. If you don't have a vacuum packer, use a ziploc and get all of the air out that you can. Use within a couple months (or a little more) if you use the ziploc.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: theDarkSide on November 05, 2012, 01:38:55 PM
I vacuum seal mine and store in the freezer.   If you're going to use them soon, the fridge would be ok too, just try to get them as airtight as you can.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: thetooth on November 05, 2012, 06:18:15 PM
I vacuum seal mine and put them in the freezer as well.  They last a LONG time that way.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: mmitchem on November 05, 2012, 06:24:31 PM
Vacuum seal is where I want to go. Doing the Ziplock sealing has to go the way of the dinosaurs. Are the regular vacuum seal bags the way to go or are the mylar foil bags preferred?
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: erockrph on November 05, 2012, 06:31:22 PM
Vacuum seal is where I want to go. Doing the Ziplock sealing has to go the way of the dinosaurs. Are the regular vacuum seal bags the way to go or are the mylar foil bags preferred?

Unless your freezer has a window or runs the light 24/7 even when it's closed, regular vacuum bags should be sufficient.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: rob_f on December 07, 2012, 09:56:32 PM
The foil doesn't just block the light, it provides an impervious oxygen barrier.  If I had foil bags for my vacuum sealer, I'd use them for long-term storage.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: blatz on December 08, 2012, 12:29:35 AM
i've always vacuum sealed, but recently i've been exploring the mason jar attachment for my sealer.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: cheba420 on December 08, 2012, 02:01:43 AM
i've always vacuum sealed, but recently i've been exploring the mason jar attachment for my sealer.
I like that idea!
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: blatz on December 08, 2012, 01:04:06 PM
The foil doesn't just block the light, it provides an impervious oxygen barrier.  If I had foil bags for my vacuum sealer, I'd use them for long-term storage.

if the vacuum is held tight, then i don't believe any oxygen is getting in.

If you have a leak in the seal, then sure.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: Jimmy K on December 08, 2012, 02:13:11 PM
i've always vacuum sealed, but recently i've been exploring the mason jar attachment for my sealer.
I like that idea!
No way those sealers are producing a true vacuum, which means a mason jar could still have a lot of oxygen in the head space.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: greatplainsbrewer on December 08, 2012, 02:34:20 PM
Flush the jar with co2 first?  I'm sure some o2 would remain but that will the case for most methods attainable for home brewers.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: jjflash on December 09, 2012, 01:31:20 AM
PET bottles under CO2 pressure then into the freezer.
I store one pound of hops in each bottle at a time.
They will keep for many years this way.
Title: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: denny on December 09, 2012, 02:06:31 AM
PET bottles under CO2 pressure then into the freezer.
I store one pound of hops in each bottle at a time.
They will keep for many years this way.

That's a great idea!
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: jjflash on December 09, 2012, 05:37:47 AM
PET bottles under CO2 pressure then into the freezer.
I store one pound of hops in each bottle at a time.
They will keep for many years this way.

That's a great idea!

Even better - I use this cap on the PET bottles for CO2 pressurization!
Use your standard ball lock gas fitting from your CO2 tank to fill.
 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v676/JJFlash/PETbottlecap.png)
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: beersk on December 10, 2012, 02:16:25 PM
PET bottles under CO2 pressure then into the freezer.
I store one pound of hops in each bottle at a time.
They will keep for many years this way.

That's a great idea!

Even better - I use this cap on the PET bottles for CO2 pressurization!
Use your standard ball lock gas fitting from your CO2 tank to fill.
 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v676/JJFlash/PETbottlecap.png)
So, how does the oxygen that is in there get purged?
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: blatz on December 10, 2012, 02:20:32 PM
So, how does the oxygen that is in there get purged?

like any standard pin lock - depressing the poppit in the middle.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: jeffy on December 10, 2012, 04:36:42 PM
So, how does the oxygen that is in there get purged?

like any standard pin lock - depressing the poppit in the middle.
He said "oxygen."  When you have liquid in the PET bottle you can squeeze all the air out before capping it with the carbonator, then add CO2, but with hops, I don't think you can do that, so there will be some O2 in there, but very little.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: morticaixavier on December 10, 2012, 04:38:28 PM
So, how does the oxygen that is in there get purged?

like any standard pin lock - depressing the poppit in the middle.
He said "oxygen."  When you have liquid in the PET bottle you can squeeze all the air out before capping it with the carbonator, then add CO2, but with hops, I don't think you can do that, so there will be some O2 in there, but very little.

I have always assumed that the idea is to fill the container with co2, wait a bit for things to settle down in there and then purge through a top opening which should get most of the o2 out as it will have migrated to the top portion of the container. still some o2 but a lot less
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: blatz on December 10, 2012, 04:53:26 PM
So, how does the oxygen that is in there get purged?

like any standard pin lock - depressing the poppit in the middle.
He said "oxygen."  When you have liquid in the PET bottle you can squeeze all the air out before capping it with the carbonator, then add CO2, but with hops, I don't think you can do that, so there will be some O2 in there, but very little.

right, but what I do is hit it with CO2 and depress the poppit to let the gas out 2-3 times to hopefully purge the oxygen. 
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: hopfenundmalz on December 10, 2012, 04:58:48 PM
Here is a way to get all (all for practical purposes) of the O2 out. A pet bottle used for soda should hold a high pressure, you might start with 20 PSI, 30 would be better and this link says it would be OK, but I would use precautions.
http://waterrocket.uh-lab.de/lr010101_bursttest.htm

There is about 21% O2 in the air in the container, or about 1 part in 5. Fill the containter to 30 PSI, and you have added 2 atmospheres, so you now have 1 part in 15. Vent the CO2, fill again. Repeat 2 or 3 times more and the amount is a very small part. If someone want to do that math, I will leave it to the motivated brewer.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: Joe Sr. on December 10, 2012, 04:59:20 PM
So, how does the oxygen that is in there get purged?

like any standard pin lock - depressing the poppit in the middle.
He said "oxygen."  When you have liquid in the PET bottle you can squeeze all the air out before capping it with the carbonator, then add CO2, but with hops, I don't think you can do that, so there will be some O2 in there, but very little.

I have always assumed that the idea is to fill the container with co2, wait a bit for things to settle down in there and then purge through a top opening which should get most of the o2 out as it will have migrated to the top portion of the container. still some o2 but a lot less

My understanding of how it works is that the gas does not form layers in that way but rather mixes uniformly in the container (over time, of course, not immediately).

Regardless, purging it a couple times should do a pretty good job.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: morticaixavier on December 10, 2012, 05:12:27 PM
So, how does the oxygen that is in there get purged?

like any standard pin lock - depressing the poppit in the middle.
He said "oxygen."  When you have liquid in the PET bottle you can squeeze all the air out before capping it with the carbonator, then add CO2, but with hops, I don't think you can do that, so there will be some O2 in there, but very little.

I have always assumed that the idea is to fill the container with co2, wait a bit for things to settle down in there and then purge through a top opening which should get most of the o2 out as it will have migrated to the top portion of the container. still some o2 but a lot less

My understanding of how it works is that the gas does not form layers in that way but rather mixes uniformly in the container (over time, of course, not immediately).

Regardless, purging it a couple times should do a pretty good job.

It mixes initially but in absence of air currents or over movement it will form layers. however it takes very little to cause the gases to mix again. but what hopfen says makes a lot more sense to me. you are really just diluting the o2 until you are at levels where it just doesn't matter anymore.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: Jimmy K on December 10, 2012, 07:33:44 PM
It mixes initially but in absence of air currents or over movement it will form layers.
I don't remember that from chemistry class. Gasses mix unformly regardless of weight. Stratification is only temporary and acheived with gentle handling. (But chemistry was a long time ago)
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: erockrph on December 10, 2012, 08:08:23 PM
It mixes initially but in absence of air currents or over movement it will form layers.
I don't remember that from chemistry class. Gasses mix unformly regardless of weight. Stratification is only temporary and acheived with gentle handling. (But chemistry was a long time ago)

Stratification can occur, but (in the absence of thermal gradients) for the difference of partial pressures in a gas mixture to be significant enough to result in an appreciable gradient you would need a huge container (not gonna do the math, but likely several kilometers in diameter).

Gas mixtures do not act like mixtures of liquid. The heavier molecules do not push the lighter ones out of the way and sink below them. Gas mixtures can be thought of separate mixtures of each component that do not interact. Both the O2 and the CO2 will expand to fill the container equally as if the other was not there.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: jjflash on December 11, 2012, 05:20:20 AM
I do it much more simply:

I remove the ball lock gas fitting from the gas hose on my CO2 tank, stuff it down the PET bottle and fill with CO2. Then dump in one pound of hop pellets. Cap with the carbonator cap and fill to 15psi CO2.  After I open the bottle to use some of the hops I again stuff the hose in the bottle, gas it, then cap and give it 15psi. Been doing this way for years and works great.   
Title: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: ajk on December 11, 2012, 09:21:48 AM
So, how does the oxygen that is in there get purged?

like any standard pin lock - depressing the poppit in the middle.
He said "oxygen."  When you have liquid in the PET bottle you can squeeze all the air out before capping it with the carbonator, then add CO2, but with hops, I don't think you can do that, so there will be some O2 in there, but very little.

I have always assumed that the idea is to fill the container with co2, wait a bit for things to settle down in there and then purge through a top opening which should get most of the o2 out as it will have migrated to the top portion of the container. still some o2 but a lot less

That's not how gases work.  Otherwise, basements would be deadly. :-)
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: blatz on December 11, 2012, 02:01:44 PM
so then what are we doing when we purge kegs prior to filling, and then purge the headspace after sealing?  Is this not worth it?
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: Joe Sr. on December 11, 2012, 02:45:32 PM
so then what are we doing when we purge kegs prior to filling, and then purge the headspace after sealing?  Is this not worth it?

See Jeff's post above:

Here is a way to get all (all for practical purposes) of the O2 out. A pet bottle used for soda should hold a high pressure, you might start with 20 PSI, 30 would be better and this link says it would be OK, but I would use precautions.
http://waterrocket.uh-lab.de/lr010101_bursttest.htm

There is about 21% O2 in the air in the container, or about 1 part in 5. Fill the containter to 30 PSI, and you have added 2 atmospheres, so you now have 1 part in 15. Vent the CO2, fill again. Repeat 2 or 3 times more and the amount is a very small part. If someone want to do that math, I will leave it to the motivated brewer.

You are essentially diluting the mixture to the point that (hopefully) the oxygen is minimized. Better to do so than not.

The only way to eliminate the oxygen entirely would be to transfer under pressure to a keg prefilled with co2.  Even then, you probably have some minimal amount of oxygen in the keg.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: hopfenundmalz on December 11, 2012, 03:29:00 PM
So, how does the oxygen that is in there get purged?

like any standard pin lock - depressing the poppit in the middle.
He said "oxygen."  When you have liquid in the PET bottle you can squeeze all the air out before capping it with the carbonator, then add CO2, but with hops, I don't think you can do that, so there will be some O2 in there, but very little.

I have always assumed that the idea is to fill the container with co2, wait a bit for things to settle down in there and then purge through a top opening which should get most of the o2 out as it will have migrated to the top portion of the container. still some o2 but a lot less

That's not how gases work.  Otherwise, basements would be deadly. :-)
Breweries with basement fermentation areas need to have CO2 alarms, as the CO2 source will pool. I worked in a place with sources in the form vehicles, and the confined spaces had to be tested before entry (think the pits for hydraulic hoists) as the heavier gases would pool. The mixing of gases from diffusion is not instantaneous.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lake_Nyos

Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: morticaixavier on December 11, 2012, 03:57:23 PM
So, how does the oxygen that is in there get purged?

like any standard pin lock - depressing the poppit in the middle.
He said "oxygen."  When you have liquid in the PET bottle you can squeeze all the air out before capping it with the carbonator, then add CO2, but with hops, I don't think you can do that, so there will be some O2 in there, but very little.

I have always assumed that the idea is to fill the container with co2, wait a bit for things to settle down in there and then purge through a top opening which should get most of the o2 out as it will have migrated to the top portion of the container. still some o2 but a lot less

That's not how gases work.  Otherwise, basements would be deadly. :-)

excuse me, let me add 'In absence of any continued mixing' which, for all practical purposes doesn't happen in 'the real world'. and basements CAN be deadly. Think co2 fire extinguishers, or failing co2 bulk tanks for that matter. If you are in a basement with say 500lb of co2 in a tank and that tank suddenly empties that basement will very much be deadly. Why? because the co2 will displace all the other gases from the bottom up. That's why it works to put out fires. that's why a balloon filled with helium rises. That's why the myth buster guys can do the trick with the heavier than air gas in the fishtank and the boat made of foil (look it up, it's pretty cool). It's not perfect statification and any little tiny movement will mix the gases again but it does happen.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: tschmidlin on December 11, 2012, 06:34:26 PM
The sudden release of gas will push other gases out of the way, that is true.  But in a closed system like a keg where there is no mixing, you will not see stratification of the gases, they mix evenly.  And let's be clear, a CO2 extinguisher does not need to push all of the O2 out of the space - the atmosphere is ~21% O2.  The amount of O2 required for sustained combustion varies by material, but in general people throw around the number 14% O2 to sustain burning.  So the CO2 extinguisher only needs to get rid of 1/3 of the O2.  For breathing, we collapse when the O2 level drops below ~8%, and suffocate in minutes if it is below ~5%.  More importantly, CO2 levels above 5% cause problems, with immediate loss of consciousness somewhere above that (10%?  15%?  I'm not sure).  So again, not all of the O2 and other gases need to be evacuated from the space to be dangerous.

that's why a balloon filled with helium rises.
You might have posted pre-coffee, but you know this has nothing to do with what we're talking about. ;)

Gases mix - the molecules move constantly (if the temperature is above absolute zero), and they move faster the warmer it is.  There is so much space between molecules and they so rarely interact with each other that we can effectively say they do not interact.  Given time and no stirring there will be an even distribution of each type of molecule throughout the given space.

It is not an oil/water analogy.  It is blue water vs. yellow water.  You can layer them as gently and carefully as you want in a closed container, but given time you will end up with green water.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: morticaixavier on December 11, 2012, 06:37:46 PM
alright, I will admit when I am wrong. course the fact that you can't displace all the o2 in a container with co2 is why I purge my kegs by filling with liquid and forcing that out with co2 so I was aware of this issue to some extent.

**EDIT**

so does this mean that the 'blanket of co2' argument is false? If I am reading and understanding this discussion correctly it means that more or less all of the o2 that was in my fermenter headspace to start with, less the amount removed by the dilution with co2 from fermentation and the amount removed by disolution into the liquid is still present at the close of fermentation. Which means that even a little stirring of a finished beer risks oxidation.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: tschmidlin on December 11, 2012, 06:45:00 PM
so does this mean that the 'blanket of co2' argument is false? If I am reading and understanding this discussion correctly it means that more or less all of the o2 that was in my fermenter headspace to start with, less the amount removed by the dilution with co2 from fermentation and the amount removed by disolution into the liquid is still present at the close of fermentation. Which means that even a little stirring of a finished beer risks oxidation.
More or less, the blanket of CO2 is a bad analogy.  It gets the point across though :)

The O2 in your headspace is effectively gone - some of it will get pushed out due to vigorous fermentation, some of it will dissolve into the beer as the O2 in the beer is taken up by the yeast, and whatever is left is not enough to worry about.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: blatz on December 11, 2012, 06:55:54 PM
The O2 in your headspace is effectively gone - some of it will get pushed out due to vigorous fermentation, some of it will dissolve into the beer as the O2 in the beer is taken up by the yeast, and whatever is left is not enough to worry about.

but what about racking into a keg?
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: Joe Sr. on December 11, 2012, 07:09:18 PM
The O2 in your headspace is effectively gone - some of it will get pushed out due to vigorous fermentation, some of it will dissolve into the beer as the O2 in the beer is taken up by the yeast, and whatever is left is not enough to worry about.

but what about racking into a keg?

Unless you've filled it with liquid and pushed that out with CO2 (ala Mort), there is oxygen in the keg.  If you've flushed it in this fashion you probably want to rack under pressure as opening the keg would defeat the purpose of flushing it, though I'm sure the flush is still beneficial.

If you have not flushed in Morts fashion, the O2 obviously gets displaced by the beer.  The remaining amount in the headspace is minimized by purging it with CO2 several times, but not entirely eliminated.

I've never worried too much about this.  Never really had an issue.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: tschmidlin on December 11, 2012, 07:55:07 PM
The O2 in your headspace is effectively gone - some of it will get pushed out due to vigorous fermentation, some of it will dissolve into the beer as the O2 in the beer is taken up by the yeast, and whatever is left is not enough to worry about.

but what about racking into a keg?

Unless you've filled it with liquid and pushed that out with CO2 (ala Mort), there is oxygen in the keg.  If you've flushed it in this fashion you probably want to rack under pressure as opening the keg would defeat the purpose of flushing it, though I'm sure the flush is still beneficial.

If you have not flushed in Morts fashion, the O2 obviously gets displaced by the beer.  The remaining amount in the headspace is minimized by purging it with CO2 several times, but not entirely eliminated.

I've never worried too much about this.  Never really had an issue.
Exactly - if it bothers you then fill the keg with starsan, push it out with CO2, and RDWHAHB.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: blatz on December 11, 2012, 08:35:42 PM
 ;D I know, I know - I've never had much of a problem in 6 years or so of kegging, but then I didn't know of these problems - guess I'm sort of a brewing hypochondriac! 
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: tschmidlin on December 12, 2012, 02:49:57 AM
;D I know, I know - I've never had much of a problem in 6 years or so of kegging, but then I didn't know of these problems - guess I'm sort of a brewing hypochondriac! 
Should we talk bout hot side aeration? :)
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: anje on December 12, 2012, 02:37:53 PM
So, how does the oxygen that is in there get purged?

like any standard pin lock - depressing the poppit in the middle.
He said "oxygen."  When you have liquid in the PET bottle you can squeeze all the air out before capping it with the carbonator, then add CO2, but with hops, I don't think you can do that, so there will be some O2 in there, but very little.

I have always assumed that the idea is to fill the container with co2, wait a bit for things to settle down in there and then purge through a top opening which should get most of the o2 out as it will have migrated to the top portion of the container. still some o2 but a lot less

That's not how gases work.  Otherwise, basements would be deadly. :-)
Breweries with basement fermentation areas need to have CO2 alarms, as the CO2 source will pool. I worked in a place with sources in the form vehicles, and the confined spaces had to be tested before entry (think the pits for hydraulic hoists) as the heavier gases would pool. The mixing of gases from diffusion is not instantaneous.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lake_Nyos
Good thing with CO2, at least, is that if you're in an area with excessive levels of it, you quickly feel breathless. (Not that you'd want to go down to a basement where it's pooled, but if you're aware of the effect and can easily escape, you've got built-in sensors for it.)  That's not the case for other gasses -- for example, there are plenty of horror stories about people working with liquid nitrogen in enclosed spaces who never knew what hit them.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: beersk on December 12, 2012, 05:16:30 PM
Right, like when I stick my head in my fermentation chest freezer to look at my beer and I nearly pass out from all the co2...
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: hubie on December 12, 2012, 06:41:10 PM
Right, like when I stick my head in my fermentation chest freezer to look at my beer and I nearly pass out from all the co2...

I did that on the first batch I made using a fermentation chest freezer.  I stuck my head in to take a whiff of the ferment and got a lung full of CO2.  That was one of those after-the-fact forehead-slapping moments where you realize how dumb you can be.  Did the same thing many, many years ago when we were inhaling helium to make funny voices and I took an extra-long breath so that I could talk for a long time.

Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: jeffy on December 13, 2012, 12:15:44 AM
Right, like when I stick my head in my fermentation chest freezer to look at my beer and I nearly pass out from all the co2...

I did that on the first batch I made using a fermentation chest freezer.  I stuck my head in to take a whiff of the ferment and got a lung full of CO2.  That was one of those after-the-fact forehead-slapping moments where you realize how dumb you can be.  Did the same thing many, many years ago when we were inhaling helium to make funny voices and I took an extra-long breath so that I could talk for a long time.
I almost fell off the catwalk on the Jack Daniels tour when I leaned out over the fermenting vats and took a big whiff.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: beersk on December 13, 2012, 02:23:19 PM
I know, I pull my head out of the chest freezer thinking, why am I so out of breath? Then I realize, duh, I just breathed in a bunch of co2.
Anyway, storing hop pellets?
I feel like using old hops gives you the bitterness, but not the aroma and flavor aspects, leaving a grassy, vegetal thing that is not terribly enjoyable.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: Joe Sr. on December 13, 2012, 02:36:51 PM
I almost fell off the catwalk on the Jack Daniels tour when I leaned out over the fermenting vats and took a big whiff.

When you have to go, there are worse ways than falling into a vat of whiskey.
Title: Re: Storing HOP Pellets
Post by: jjflash on December 14, 2012, 03:02:05 PM
I feel like using old hops gives you the bitterness, but not the aroma and flavor

You nailed it there.  From the moment hops are harvested they begin to deteriorate. Careful handling with freezer temperatures and CO2 enviroment will slow deterioration, but will not halt the process. We loose aroma, flavor and bitterness it that order.