One of the most commonly encountered yet widely undiscussed complications faced by brewing facilities is that beer by nature is a corrosive substance. Brewing professionals will amply converse about the threat of product contamination and microbial invasions, but the industry as a whole widely neglects to mention the inherent dangers of brewing until it is too late. Micro-breweries spend much of their capital on the necessary equipment and tools of the trade, but often forget to take proper care of it because they remain highly focused on their end product. However, industry experts suggest that proper upkeep and maintenance of the facility and brewery equipment will ultimately improve the consistency and quality of a beer. It will also keep micro-breweries from encountering unnecessary financial complications of equipment breakdown or property damage costs that are the result of naturally occurring corrosion.
By nature, beer is not only acidic but also contains live microorganisms which can cause bio-fouling and bio-corrosion to occur through the brewing and fermentation process. Beer itself can be corrosive to the storage tanks and lines used through brewing process, as well as to the brewing facility itself. This can lead to equipment failure and costly property damage which can place a strain on any small business.
Choosing the right equipment is crucial for any brewery. Experts say that stainless steel is one of the best materials brewers can use as it is acid resistant and therefore will not taint the product. Other common metals used in brewing are brass, copper, aluminum and non-stainless steel. Corrosion is commonly found along the joins or places where two different types of metals come in contact, so proper cleaning and positioning can greatly help reduce it’s impact of brewing equipment.
Beer can also pose a problem to concretes and other structural elements of a brewery. The beer acids will actually dissolve the lime found in concrete weakening the stability of the concrete. Bacteria can easily grow in the porous concrete feeding off the sugars and grins which can soak into the floor. These damp conditions can cause any steel in contact with the concrete to rapidly corrode, including support beams and structural components. This can produce horrible odors and impede the structural stability of a brewery’s, and the only solution is to remove all affected areas of flooring. Luckily, there are many solutions to these hazards, if the proper care is takes and knowhow should be consulted.
At Capital Insurance Agency, we specialize in helping Michigan Breweries protect themselves and their operation for a variety risk exposures. We provider Brewer’s Guild members the most comprehensive business insurance solutions designed specifically to protect the unique needs of brewing the industry. We can help your operation obtain Michigan Brewery Insurance policies which include everything from food spoilage to machinery breakdown coverage, to ensure that your assets are protected. To learn more about our offerings, give us a call today at 888-296-0418.