A Better Brew: Genetics Being Used for Yeast Improvements in Beer


In California, White Labs is working with a Belgian genetics laboratory to research, improve and expand yeast strains for beer brewing. The lab has more than 10,000 different yeast strains that can be used for beer, wine, ethanol and food fermentation. Kevin Verstrepen, leader of the Belgian lab, told Laboratory Equipment ““Yes, we do this work for flavor, but also to improve fermentation so brewers can make beers faster, or so a smaller brewer can make more beer.” The challenge is consumer fear of GMOs, which is leading to many breweries having a lack of interest in the yeast biotechnology. Brewers are often content using the same few yeast strains over and over again, but the possibilities in different flavors are limitless with thousands of yeast strains available for experimentation.