Principles of Pasteurization

Learn the issues behind pasteurizing beer and other beverages


Packaging, Pasteurization, Cold Spot, PU, Tunnel, Cabinet, Bath


Since its introduction, pasteurization has been an important step of beer production practiced mostly by large commercial breweries and beverage producers.

However, with the popularity of such products as seltzer, and the advent of more styles including late fermentable additions, pasteurization needs to be on the craft brewers' minds. This is especially the case for breweries producing low-alcohol and alcohol-free beer, which require special attention due to the potential of microbiological contamination issues not normally encountered in alcohol-containing beer. So, what is pasteurization? What does it achieve? What are the limitations?

Although the lecture primarily focuses on the design and operation of tunnel pasteurizers, alternative options are considered in order to achieve microbiological stability.

Learning Objectives

  • Determine the appropriate stabilization method
  • Discuss tunnel, cabinet, and bath pasteurizers
  • Define the term “cold spot”
  • Explain why pasteurization treatments differ between various products
  • Calculate pasteurization units for beer
  • Describe the various features of a tunnel pasteurizer
  • Discuss the internal pressures in beer containers
  • Discuss the need for water treatment systems

Lecture developed by

Tom Rutledge

Tom started his career in plant operations at Labatt Breweries, where he trained for several years in brewing, packaging, maintenance and quality. He moved to Labatt’s Engineering department as a project manager, and then specialized in product development as a Packaging Development Engineer.

Tom has worked for many years with material suppliers and packaging equipment manufacturers to develop new packages and improve the quality of the existing ones. He holds several patents on packaging and packaging equipment, and even has one in brewing.

Tom was one of the original 4 industry committee members that established the bottle design and technical agreement for the Canadian beer industry standard mold bottle. Tom chaired the technical committee that governed this agreement for many years, and he still helps audit new suppliers of the bottle.

With InterBrew Tom became the Global Technical Services Coordinator for packaging, and then became the North American Manager of Packaging, Cooling & Dispense Equipment Development for InBev. Tom is now retired but consults part time within the exciting world of beer packaging.

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Enroll options

Lecture Duration (Narration)
75 minutes

Online Access to Lecture
10 days from time of purchase

Lecture Level


Lecture Duration
75 minutes

Online Access to Lecture
10 days from time of purchase



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