2015-04-02 Product News

New Alfa Laval De-alcoholization Module lowers costs and energy consumption

At the Drinktec exhibition in Munich, Germany, from September 16 to 20, Alfa Laval – a leading global provider of products and modules for the beer, beverage and food industries – launches a new efficient solution for chilled low-alcohol beer below 0.5%.

The global beer market has in recent years witnessed a trend towards increased consumption of low- and non-alcohol beer. Consequently, more and more breweries are looking for cost and energy efficient solutions that can produce these types of products.

“Although several dedicated solutions for the production of low- and non-alcohol beer already exist, these often require a heavy capital investment  or cannot reach the low-alcohol threshold to be of interest to many breweries,” says John Kyle Dorton, Competence Centre Manager, Process Modules & Thermal, Alfa Laval. To overcome these hurdles, Alfa Laval has developed a completely new cost- and energy efficient de-alcoholization concept that provides chilled low-alcohol beer below 0.5% alcohol by volume.

Combined knowhow and technologies solved the challenges

“To find a solution that enabled us to reach the required low alcohol and cost level, we put together a number of experts from different parts of Alfa Laval’s organization,” says John Kyle Dorton. “And the team came up with a quite innovative combination of diverse technologies, from beer degassing and culinary steam generation to vacuum stripping and alcohol condensing, which had to work in tandem as an integrated system - a first for a brewery process module.”

The new Alfa Laval De-alcoholization Module combines processes for effective single-pass removal of alcohol from beer at low temperature and pressure. The efficient de-alcoholization principle uses stripping and eliminates the need for recirculation.

Low energy consumption and recovery

The process offers a high degree of energy recovery, minimizing thermal energy and the risk of freezing the de-alcoholized beer.

The de-alcoholization module is fully automated and includes steam-based sterilization-in-place (SIP) plus a built-in cleaning-in-place (CIP) program.

Arasan Brewery the first to use Alfa Laval’s new de-alcoholization concept

The concept was successfully tested and proven at Alfa Laval’s brewery customer TOO Arasan in Kazakhstan. Here, the trial results confirmed that the level of alcohol could be lowered by decreasing the vacuum stripping pressure, allowing Arasan to fine tune the final beer alcohol level from an input of over 5 percent to their target of below 0.4 percent (by volume).  

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