From the HBD Archive
From: hplabs!harvard!ima!wang7!klm
Subject: Re: Dry Hopping and Infection
Date: 1989-02-07 16:33:31 GMT

While I agree that Dry Hopping is attractive, I have avoided it since
the time I ruined a batch of beer. I dry hopped the primary with
Cascade pellets. Within a couple of days I had a raging infection
(again, I don't know what kind. I'm an engineer, not a microbio<mumble>)
I'm convinced that unwanted microbeasties in the hops caused the problem.

So, what's the solution? We want to be able to sterilize the hops before
we let them anywhere near our precious wort. Sounds easy, huh? Ok, how
do we go about doing that without boiling or ruining them?

I had an idea. It's just an idea, and I'm not even sure if it will work.
Perhaps somebody out there can answer this. Will nuking the hops in a
microwave oven kill bacteria? Not heating them up a great deal, mind you,
just nuking them on low power for a while. Will the microwave radiation
dispatch the bacteria without cooking off the aromatics?

What about other non-heat, non-chemical forms of sterilization?
Strong UV exposure? I know that certain bottled water companies use
UV to sterilize water. Will that work for hops?

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