The Proper Cider/Perry Bottling Process Can Avoid Risk and Significant Losses
The yeast strains used in the fermentation of cider, Saccaromyces bayanus, have a low alcohol tolerance. Yeast cells in bottled cider with residual sugar can referment and cause cloudiness and sediments, developing a yeasty aroma and flavor. The carbon dioxide produced in bottled cider containing sufficient residual sugar may even explode if refermentation takes place in a sealed state.
Implementing a well thought out cider bottling program that includes pre-filtration and final filtration will ensure that your brand is protected and that your product quality is consistent. It will also help you avoid the risk, and potentially, significant losses associated with product recall.
The cider bottling process is extensive; however, we support the essential process that maintains the product’s preservation longevity.
Prior to cider bottling, the typical upstream cellar processing includes crossflow filtration or some combination of Diatomaceous Earth (DE) and sheet filtration. Additionally, the wine may have undergone chemical stabilization and/or cold stabilization (tartaric stabilization). At this point, the cider should be free of particles and visually clear (turbidity < 1 NTU) with a filterability index of less than 30.
During cider clarification, after upstream filtration, the storage time prior to final bottling should be as short as possible to avoid contamination, changes to the properties of the cider (oxidation, precipitation) and to prevent microorganism growth. Ideally, the cellar filtration should occur no more than 3 days before final filtration and bottling.