I notice that some Pro's are washing their yeast with chlorine dioxide with pretty good success. It looks pretty simple when using that active ingredient. Anyone have any experience with it?
No because I'm a homebrewer. And what's "pretty good success"....what are they trying to accomplish? What benefits would it have for a homebrewer? Martin, sorry if it sounds like I'm getting on your case...that's not my intent. I'm just sick of homebrewers assuming that everything a commercial brewer does is what they should be doing.
A while back I thought I had read that the process needs to remain in a cold environment and that the yeast would need to be used very quickly (like within an hour or two) after washing the yeast using this method because the process was so "hard" on them, and they would quickly lose vitality (and life) if too much time passed between washing and use. Additionally, how well would the chlorine dioxide need to be rinsed from the washed yeast to ensure no carryover that could result in chlorophenol production. I may be thinking of a different washing chemical, but I really think it was chlorine dioxide.
As for the commercial vs homebrewer, I can understand it to a point as well. Commercial practices are generally in place to ensure the upmost quality and stability of the finished product, so I ask myself "why wouldn't I want the same for myself?" The flip side is that I don't want to lose an eye; ruin my lungs; invest a ton of money; take up a portion of my house with a lab; or product subpar beer simply because a commercial brewer is doing it. At the same rate, if the process is something as simple as "swishing the yeast in a benign solution a few minutes before using" and there's no risk of bodily/beer harm then I'd try it, and if the results were improvement in the beer then I may continue doing it. Edit: The little bit of reading I did on chlorine dioxide sure makes it sound like it carries a risk level I wouldn't want to take.
But yeah, just because commercial breweries do things and produce good beer doesn't mean that we have to to produce good beer.