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Negative Bicarbonate in Bru'n Water

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Of course, there is no such thing as negative bicarbonate in chemistry.  But in Bru'n Water, its just an indicator of added acid in the water. 

Since a positive bicarbonate concentration is neutralized by malt acids, a negative value just indicates that it is adding to the overall acidity of the mash. In the case of a low acidity mash grist (mostly base malt), there is a need for the mashing water to provide additional acidity (negative bicarbonate in the case of Bru'n Water's convention) to reduce the mash pH to an acceptable level.   So in the case of that Steam Beer, the negative bicarbonate indicator is not a problem. 



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