A successful brewery enterprise relies on quality control (QC) as much as it does on quality assurance (QA). Michael Lewis, Brewing Science professor at the University of California explains that there are three pillars of QA: rigorous sanitation, consistent processing, and specified raw materials.
For brewery owners, these pillars apply to many different aspects in their brewery plants. If you’re new to the business or managing a brewery plant, here’s where you can implement these pillars:
Spare Part Management
Focus on growing your business by optimising its new part management system. For example, when sourcing your stainless-steel pipe fittings, partner with a company that offers the legwork.
An optimised spare part management system streamlines processes in your brewery plant. It’s easy to implement, and it ensures that the level of safety you put into operation is efficient. If you want to provide the right balance when stocking spare parts, a classification system should be in place.
A good start is using an ABC classification label. A parts are highly critical items; B parts have average importance, and C parts are uncritical. However, you have to inspect them every week. This classification system can help you optimise both your plant availability and operating costs.
It can be risky to work in a brewery plant. Elements and substances such as cleaning chemicals, harmful gases, forklifts, packaging machines, electricity, and hot water found in breweries can make it a dangerous place to work in.
To make your brewery a safer place to work, here are some suggestions from Birko Corp. Brewing Specialist, Dana Johnson:
Use suitable anti-foam to avoid boiling. When sanitising and cleaning products in the Clean-In-Place system, make sure that you use personal protective equipment (PPE). For general sanitation and maintenance, include cleaning of drains and floors to avoid falls and slips. And install signs or tags on machines that are being serviced so that you or your workers can prevent accidents.
A brewery can be considered a manufacturing facility, food producer, and at times, a construction zone. It is a busy place, so it’s critical to make sure your staff gets off to a good start. You need to make sure that a new staff member will understand that production, quality, and safety are critical.
To do this, you should create an orientation checklist to make sure everything is covered. During the orientation, a walkthrough of the brewery should be completed as well before the new team member starts their job. The person conducting the adjustment, on the other hand, must know the brewery well and everything on the checklist.
QA vs. QC
While QA deals with the general status of a brewery, its processes, staff, and product, QC is all about the specific issues of analysis and specification that focuses on the product only. The two manages different aspects of breweries.
Making beer is not an exact science. But your chances are good if you implement both QA and QC to your work. You will make mistakes, but you can learn from them while having fun in the process.