Catch the True Spirit of Quality Control

Quality Control for Spirit Distillation

For a Smooth Taste and Long Shelf Life – Sartorius Helps Keep Your Quality Under Control

Spirits are not prone to microbial contamination due to the high alcohol content, yet contamination can still occur in distilleries resulting in product spoilage or diminished ethanol efficiency. Routine testing at different points in production is key; from raw materials, to production and proofing water through to ambient air in the bottling area.

Trust your spirits with routine QC testing from Sartorius.

Ask Our Experts

Process Flow Chart for Your Spirit Process*

Discover the different steps in the spirits workflow and click on the icon „+“ to get to know the variety of applications and solutions Sartorius offers for testing during your manufacturing process.

*This workflow may not exactly represent your distillery workflow, however it generalizes the QC checkpoints.

Applications in Your Quality Control (QC) and Our Product Solutions

You are committed to creating high-quality spirits with consistent look, smell, feel and flavor from one bottle to the next. We are committed to providing you the products you need to ensure your spirits’ taste, aroma and quality. For spirits processing QC, we have solutions for the following applications:

Moisture Determination of Raw Materials and Spent Grain

To ensure the consistency and quality of your spirits, you need to have confidence in the quality of your raw materials. To do this, you must prevent fungal contamination in your raw materials by checking their moisture content before you start fermentation and distillation.

Also, at the end of production, to recycle waste and get the most out of your by-products, you can sell your spent grain as livestock feed. Here, testing its moisture content is again critical to avoiding fungal contamination and making sure you get the best price for your spent grain.


What to test?

  • Moisture determination of incoming raw materials
  • Moisture analysis on spent grains

Sartorius has products and solutions to help you detect moisture quickly and easily in your raw ingredients and spent grain.

Moisture Analyzer MA160

Flexible all-rounder offering fast and reliable moisture analysis for the widest variety of samples including extended data storage and security features:

  • Fast and accurate results
  • Easy to operate
  • Status light for simple tracking of current progress during measurement
  • Fully automatic endpoint determination and calculation of the result
  • Built-in 5 minute performance-check guarantees correct measurements at all times
  • Effortless cleaning in the dishwasher thanks to Sartorius Better Clean Design
  • Enables storage of up to 100 different methods to manage measurement of various materials effectively and securely. The method development assistant function makes adaption to new materials and requirements easy.

Read More

Moisture Analyzer MA37

Budget-friendly model for users who require a fast, 100% reliable analyzer for recurring samples that is easy to operate

  • Fast and accurate results
  • Easy to operate
  • Status light for simple tracking of current progress during measurement.
  • Fully automatic endpoint determination and calculation of the result
  • Effortless cleaning in the dishwasher thanks to Sartorius Better Clean Design

Read More

Water Testing

Although cities routinely perform microbiological and chemical water monitoring, contamination can occur in your distillery during the production process, so regular, weekly testing of water supplies and piping, tubing/gaskets is recommended.

Water is also added at the proofing stage of your spirit production to reduce the percentage alcohol or “proof” to a safe, drinkable level.  The water quality you use for this application must be of a purity standard appropriate for drinking water, or there is a risk of "floc haze" appearing in the spirits during bottling due to chemical contaminants precipitating out or a microbial biofilm developing. 


What to test?

Regular total colony counts and tests to identify coliform bacteria and specifically E.coli are recommended for microbiological quality control of this important ingredient.

e.Motion Dispenser Membrane Filters

Membrane filtration is the established method of choice for liquid testing as you can test a higher volume of the sample by concentration of potential contaminants on the membrane filter. This method provides reliable and reproducible results. The recommended filter type for microbiological testing of liquid samples is a cellulose nitrate (mixed cellulose ester) filter with grid lines. Your benefits include:

  • Various filter colors allow the optimal contrast to colonies for easy quantification and identification
  • High recovery rates of microorganisms
  • Fast flow rates of liquid samples with High flow membranes
  • Easy colony counting due to clear colony morphology and distinct grid lines.
  • No inhibition of microbial growth by grid lines
  • Available in 2 different packages sizes 
  • Configured for use with automatic Mircrosart® e.motion dispenser

Read More

Microsart® e.Motion Dispenser

Automatic membrane filter dispensing either by touch of a button, hands-free motion detection or by using a foot switch minimize risks of secondary contamination.  Your benefits include:

  • Space-saving small footprint
  • Automated opening of the filter package makes workflow easier
  • Available with battery option that avoids cable clutter
  • Big pack with 250 filters avoids re-loading during a shift

Read More

Microsart® Manifold

Facilitate your routine microbiological testing procedures with the new  Microsart® Manifold. Select the proper manifold for your individual microbiological testing procedure, choose between reusable and single use funnels or filtration units, and decide between different sizes of manifolds and enjoy the manifold that adapts to your needs.

Read More

Microsart® e.Jet Pump

Liquid transfer pump connects to Microsart® Manifold as the vacuum source for the filtration of your liquid samples. Your benefits include:

  • Small footprint
  • Can be adapted directly to the manifold, no need for suction flask or Woulffs bottle
  • External pump head, making it easy to change pump direction or exchange entirely

Read More

Biosart® 250 Funnel

Reusable funnel with a volume of 250mL, adapted to a cellulose nitrate membrane filter on the Microsart® Manifold. Your benefits include:

  • Can be autoclaved up to 20-30 times
  • No need for flaming of the funnels after each filtration step

Read More

Microsart® 250 Funnel

Single use funnel with a volume of 250 mL, adapted to a cellulose nitrate membrane filter on the Microsart® Manifold. Your benefit includes:

  • Single use funnel for minimized risk of secondary contamination
  • No autoclaving of the funnels needed
  • No need for flaming of the funnels after each filtration step

Read More

Biosart® 100 Monitors

Ready-to-use sterile filtration unit in 100ml volume. Combine a funnel, a lid, a filter base, a gridded membrane filter and a cellulose pad in one unit. Your benefit includes:

  • Saves time and handling steps as autoclaving of funnels and base is not needed
  • Minimize the risk of secondary contamination
  • Available in different pore sizes and membrane colors
  • Different ampoule media types available for water testing

Read More

Biosart® 100 Nutrient Media

Sterile ready to use liquid Media in a 2.5ml ampoule. For use with Biosart Monitors or Cellulose Pads in Petri dishes. Your benefit includes:

  • Saves time because no preparation of media needed
  • Saves space in laboratory refridgerator
  • Different media types for water and beer testing available
  • Long shelf life of 9-12 months

Read More

Microsart® @Filter

Ready-to-use sterile filtration unit in 100 or 250ml volume. Combine a funnel, a filter base and a gridded
membrane filter in one unit. Your benefit includes:

  • Saves time and handling steps as autoclaving of funnels and base is not needed
  • Minimize the risk of secondary contamination
  • Reliable results as no liquid remains after filtration

Read More

Nutrient Pad Sets (NPS)

An attractive alternative to agar plates, NPS are dehydrated media pads in petri dishes, packed in double layer Aluminium protective bag, come along with suitable membrane filters for economical, time-saving microbiological quality control of water and distillery samples. Your benefits include:

  • Eliminate time-consuming, labor-intensive culture media preparation
  • No need for cooling of the NPS during storage or transportation due to dehydrated media
  • Long shelf-life of 2 years
  • Suitable membrane filter included (pore size and color)

Read More

Prospenser Plus

Bottle-top Dispenser, dispenses an exact volume of sterile water for wetting the Nutrient Pad Sets for activation of the nutrient media.

Read More

Spoilage Testing

Despite the anti‐microbial properties of spirits and having a Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point system (HACCP) system in place, microbial contamination can occur before distillation and in your proofing water.

This can lead to the formation of floc or haze in your spirits, which can affect your shelf life stability and customer’s confidence in your brand.


What to test?

  • Total colony count testing of proofing water

Sartorius has the products and solutions for fast, effective, and efficient detection and capture of potential spoilage-producing microorganisms to maintain the quality of your spirits on the shelf.

e.Motion Dispenser Membrane Filters

Membrane filtration is the established method of choice for spirits testing as you can test a higher volume of the sample by concentration of potential contaminants on the membrane filter. This method provides reliable and reproducible results. The recommended filter type for microbiological testing of liquid samples is cellulose nitrate (mixed cellulose ester) filter with grid lines. Your benefits include:

  • Various filter colors allow the optimal contrast to colonies for easy quantification and identification
  • High recovery rates of microorganisms
  • Fast flow rates of liquid samples with High flow membranes
  • Easy colony counting due to clear colony morphology and distinct grid lines.
  • No inhibition of microbial growth by grid lines
  • Available in 2 different packages sizes 
  • Configured for use with automatic Mircrosart® e.motion dispenser

Read More

Microsart® e.Motion Dispenser

Automatic membrane filter dispensing either by touch of a button, hands-free motion detection or by using a foot switch minimize risks of secondary contamination.  Your benefits include:

  • Space-saving small footprint
  • Automated opening of the filter package makes workflow easier
  • Available with battery option that avoids cable clutter
  • Big pack with 250 filters avoids re-loading during a shift

Read More

Microsart ® Manifold

Faciliate your routine microbiological testing procedures with the new  Microsart® Manifold: select the proper manifold for your individual microbiological testing procedure, choose between reusable and single use funnels or filtration units, and decide between different sizes of manifolds and enjoy the manifold that adapts to your needs.

Read More

Microsart® e.Jet Pump

Liquid transfer pump connects to Microsart® Manifold as the vacuum source for the filtration of your liquid samples. Your benefits include:

  • Small footprint
  • Can be adapted directly to the manifold, no need for suction flask or Woulffs bottle
  • External pump head, making it easy to change pump direction or exchanged entirely

Read More

Biosart® 250 Funnel

Reusable funnel with a volume of 250mL, adapted to a cellulose nitrate membrane filter on the Microsart® Manifold. Your benefits include:

  • Can be autoclaved up to 20-30 times
  • No need for flaming of the funnels after each filtration step

Read More

Microsart® 250 Funnel

Single use funnel with a volume of 250 mL, adapted to a cellulose nitrate membrane filter on the Microsart® Manifold. Your benefit includes:

  • Single use funnel for minimized risk of secondary contamination
  • No autoclaving of the funnels needed
  • No need for flaming of the funnels after each filtration step

Read More

Biosart® 100 Monitors

Ready-to-use sterile filtration unit in 100ml volume. Combine a funnel, a lid, a filter base, a gridded membrane filter and a cellulose pad in one unit. Your benefit includes:

  • Saves time and handling steps as autoclaving of funnels and base is not needed
  • Minimize the risk of secondary contamination
  • Available in different pore sizes and membrane colors
  • Different ampoule media types available for water testing

Read More

Biosart® 100 Nutrient Media

Sterile ready to use liquid Media in a 2.5ml ampoule. For use with Biosart Monitors or Cellulose Pads in Petri dishes. Your benefit includes:

  • Saves time because no preparation of media needed
  • Saves space in laboratory refridgerator
  • Different media types for water and beer testing available
  • Long shelf life of 9-12 months

Read More

Microsart @Filter

Ready-to-use sterile filtration unit in 100 or 250ml volume. Combine a funnel, a filter base and a gridded
membrane filter in one unit. Your benefit includes:

  • Saves time and handling steps as autoclaving of funnels and base is not needed
  • Minimize the risk of secondary contamination
  • Reliable results as no liquid remains after filtration

Read More

Nutrient Pad Sets (NPS)

An attractive alternative to agar plates, NPS are dehydrated media pads in petri dishes, , packed in double layer Aluminium protective bag, come along with suitable membrane filters for economical, time-saving microbiological quality control of water and distillery samples. Your benefits include:

  • Eliminate time-consuming, labor-intensive culture media preparation
  • No need for cooling of the NPS during storage or transportation due to dehydrated media
  • Long shelf-life of 2 years
  • Suitable membrane filter included (pore size and color)

Read More

Prospenser Plus

Bottle-top Dispenser, dispenses an exact volume of sterile water for wetting the Nutrient Pad Sets for activation of the nutrient media.

Read More

Analytical QC

If your spirits age in wooden barrels, they acquire tannins, sugars, complex biochemical compounds and color, as well as undergo significant chemical reactions. The profile of your spirits are modified in ways that are complex and analytical sample testing can be used to detect or follow changes as your spirits age. Based on blending, process, aging and additives, you can characterize distinct fingerprints both within the same type of spirit and detect differences in your brand. Eventually, it is possible to generate a product fingerprint library that you can use to help maintain product quality and detect adulteration of your spirits to ensure it meets your customer’s high standards.

These tests can detect the following:

  • Sugar content, nitrogen compounds, salts and minerals, and other compounds that may be present
  • Alcohol content
  • Measurement of pH value
  • Compounds such as international bitterness units (IBUs), polyphenols, free amino nitrogen, sulfur dioxide
  • Ash content before distillation (in rum only)
  • Color measurements
  • Overall "proof" or alcohol concentration after distillation using a hygrometer
  • Alcohol content using a pycnometer or dry matter determination of residue on ignition


To run any analytical or sensory tests, you need the right tools for sample preparation, such as pipettes, laboratory balances, syringe filters, filter papers and water purification systems. The quality of your results is dependent on the quality of your sample, and at Sartorius we provide the right products and solutions to make your sample preparation for analytical testing quick, accurate and efficient.

Arium® Mini UV Water Filtration System

High-quality water is important to all analytical processes, but it is especially important when performing chromatographic analysis, such as HPLC, GC-MS, or ICP.
Arium® Mini lab water system: a compact ultrapure water system specially designed for labs with requirements up to 15 liters per day. Key advantages:

  • Constantly low conductivity: ASTM Type 1 water to increase sensitivity of analytical results and minimize chemical ion interference
  • Consistently low TOC levels: Remove TOC levels down to a minimum and avoid background noises in chromatograms 
  • Reliable process stability: Offering a variety of services, e.g. installation, equipment qualification (IQ|OQ), preventative maintenance etc. ensuring consistently reliable water quality along the entire life cycle of the system.
  • Ease-of-use: Intuitive menu navigation with easy-to-use touch display
  • Space-saving unit with a width of only 28 cm (11 inches)

Read More

Cubis®️ II Premium Laboratory Balance

A completely configurable, high-performance portfolio of lab balance hardware and software that will align with your unique demands and compliance requirements to maximize operational efficiency and experimental outcomes. Your benefits include:

  • Large 7“ color display, including touch, scroll, swipe functionality with factory installed essential weighing applications and diverse QApp Packages for optional software extension
  • Built-in applications guide you through your workflows
  • Fast and easy levelling guaranteed with automatic, motorized levelling function
  • Status Center for user notifications and alerts. User management including centralized password management support, high security password configuration, login rules.

Read More

Quintix® Lab Balance

A reliable lab balance for faster and better weighing results. Your benefits include:

  • The Start Assistant function and SmartTouch user interface enable you to operate the balance right-out-of-the-box and feel at ease using all the functions available
  • Intuitive applications guide you through simple steps in each of your workflows.
  • Quickly and easily transfer, evaluate, further process, or save and document weighing results in perfect compliance with legal requirements – just by using Plug & Play technology, without the need for any extra software or complicated settings

Read More

Prospenser and Prospenser Plus

  • Provides accurate and precise dispensing throughout their long lifetime thanks to the high-quality materials
  • Low weight provides comfortable usability
  • Excellent chemical resistance

Read More

Tacta® Pipette

  • Superb comfort and incontestable reliability helps you to achieve minimal variation throughout the working day.
  • Best ergonomics with soft tip attachment and light ejection protects the user.
  • Only three parts to clean enforces contamination free pipetting – combine with Safe-Cone filters or SafetySpace Filter tips to boost contamination control and prolong the pipettes lifetime.

Read More

Optifit Tips

  • Perfect fitting and sealing with Sartorius pipettes secures the highest possible accuracy and precision.
  • Wide volume range and packaging options to suit your application and use.
  • Optifit tips meet the highest purity and quality standards.

Read More

Minisart® Syringe Filters

  • Minisart® RC is optimized for aqueous liquids and solvents and is compatible with DMSO, other amides, ketones, esters and ethers.
  • Minisart® NY Plus uses a pure quartz glass fiber prefilter optimized for sample preparation for all medium to highly particle-laden samples prior to analytical tests.
  • Minisart® High Flow offers fast flow rates for low to medium particle-laden samples without any prefilter material, without increasing hold-up volume.

Read More

Claristep®

  • The Claristep® Filtration System is the best choice for easy handling and low hold-up volume for small sample volumes.
  • See our application note for Claristep® and food/beverage.

Read More

Check Weighing

Accurately determining if your bottles are over or unfilled with spirits, is a critical step in ensuring product quality and maintaining your brand’s reputation with customers.

Our balances provide a reliable method of checking the weight of filled bottles of spirits. Their height supports easy handling of glass bottles and using the Check Weighing program with defined limits and weighing visual aids means that with minimal training your staff can control the weight of filled bottles or nominal gross weights more accurately and cost-effectively than you would using balance technology built into your production line.

Featuring, corrosion resistant stainless-steel weighing pans and simple easy clean, assemble/disassemble components our balances are ideally suited for use in production facilities where you are weighing corrosive or sweet spirits and need to clean regularly.  Where vibrations, airflow and temperature changes are challenging in your production area, our quick balance levelling technology, (bubble indicator on Entris® and Quintix® or simply press a button on Cubis® II balances) offers rapid stabilization times, maintaining accurate weighing performance time after time.


Features

  • Check weight is a function in our essential weighing applications package that comes with Cubis® II (MCA), Quintix and Entris® II  balances.
  • Check weight determines whether a bottle weight falls within a specified tolerance range.
  • Print out each measure and change to the next identical bottle or can and get the stats in the end at the touch of a button.
  • Weighs safe the different bottle types (glass and plastic) in sizes from 0.3 L up to 5 L


Recommendations, norms, regulations and directives our balances work according to, include:

OIML R 79, R 87 & R138

Directives 76/211/EEC, 2007/45/EC, 2009/34/EC & 75/107/EEC

NIST Handbook 133, 21-C.F.R. Part 101 and 27-CFR Parts 5, 19 & 27

Watch Video

Cubis®️ II Premium Laboratory Balance

A completely configurable, high-performance portfolio of lab balance hardware and software that will align with your unique demands and compliance requirements to maximize operational efficiency and experimental outcomes. Your benefits include:

  • Large 7“ color display, including touch, scroll, swipe functionality with factory installed essential weighing applications and diverse QApp Packages for optional software extension
  • Built-in applications guide you through your workflows
  • Fast and easy levelling guaranteed with automatic, motorized levelling function
  • Status Center for user notifications and alerts. User management including centralized password management support, high security password configuration, login rules.

Read More

Quintix® Lab Balance

A reliable lab balance for faster and better weighing results. Your benefits include:

  • The Start Assistant function and SmartTouch user interface enable you to operate the balance right-out-of-the-box and feel at ease using all the functions available
  • Intuitive applications guide you through simple steps in each of your workflows.
  • Quickly and easily transfer, evaluate, further process, or save and document weighing results in perfect compliance with legal requirements – just by using Plug & Play technology, without the need for any extra software or complicated settings

Read More

Entris® II Lab Balance

  • Best Value in its Class for Basic Weighing Tasks.
  • Unrivalled value at a budget price point, Entris® II is the only balance in its class featuring isoCAL, LED touch technology and 12 built-in applications.
  • High chemical resistance ensured using parts made from hard-wearing polybutylene terephthalate (PBT), stainless steel and glass

Read More

Watch the Video

Click here to go back to other applications

Resources

Sartorius Introduces Cubis® II Modular Laboratory Balances for...

Download

The Role of Pipette Tips in Achieving the Best Pipetting Performance

Download

Practical Tips for Choosing the Bottle-top Dispenser for Your Lab

Download

Ultrapure Water for HPLC Analysis - The Role of Ultrapure Water

Download

Ultrapure Water for Trace Analysis with ICP-MS

Download

Ergonomic and Efficient Filtration for Food Analysis

Download

Brochure: Claristep® Filtration System — The Easy Choice – Syringeless and Fast

PDF | 3.6 MB

Filter Papers for the Laboratory and Industry

PDF | 8.7 MB

Minisart® Syringe Filters — The Easy Choice – Clean and Safe (US and Canada)

PDF | 6.1 MB

Brochure: arium® mini – Compact Ultrapure Water Systems for 10 Liters per Day

PDF | 2.0 MB

Cubis® II: Your Balance, Your Way

PDF | 2.5 MB

Entris® II Brochure | English

PDF | 2.3 MB

Brochure: The New MA160 Moisture Analyzer Manages Your Sophisticated Tasks

PDF | 2.0 MB

The New MA37 Moisture Analyzer for Daily Routine Operation

PDF | 1.9 MB

Microsart e.motion Dispenser

PDF | 326.0 KB

Microbiological Testing of Foods, Beverages, Drinking Water and Pharmaceuticals

PDF | 6.5 MB

Quintix® and Secura® Standard Laboratory Balances: Reliable Weighing for Faster and Better Results

PDF | 1.8 MB

High Quality Pipette Tips for Consistent and Reliable Results

PDF | 22.1 MB

Prospenser and Prospenser Plus – Superior Bottle-top Dispensers

PDF | 1.1 MB

Brochure: Tacta® Mechanical Pipettes — Perfectly Balanced

PDF | 2.3 MB

Tacta® Pipette Multipacks The Smart Solution for Your Lab

PDF | 278.5 KB

arium® mini UV water filtration system

Watch Here

Cubis® II Premium Laboratory Balance

Watch Here

Biosart® 100 Monitors

Watch Here

Biosart® 100 Media

Watch Here

Nutrient Pad Sets (NPSs)

Watch Here

Quintix®

Watch Here

Tacta® Mechanical Pipette

Watch Here

Microsart® @filter 100 | 250 — Sterile single-use filter units featuring a click-fit closure

PDF | 109.9 KB

Data_Microsart-Manifolds_2475693-000-e.pdf

PDF | 820.3 KB

Microsart® Funnel 100|250 — The sterile disposable filter funnel

PDF | 600.4 KB

Biosart® 100 Monitors — Microbiological and Analytical Filtration Units

PDF | 74.4 KB

Terreni di coltura liquidi BioSart® 100 — Terreni liquidi per controlli microbiologici con unità filtranti

PDF | 243.4 KB

Microsart® e.jet — Laboratory Transfer Pump with Quick Connection for Microbiological Analysis

PDF | 137.5 KB

Microsart® e.motion Dispensers — Make Membranes Move

PDF | 158.1 KB

Workflow poster Beverage QC: Spirits process

Download

Syringe Filters — Sartorius Minisart® Selection Guide

Download

Pipette Cleaning - Your pipette and samples are precious

Download

Top 10 tips to avoid contamination in pipetting

Download

Nutrient Pad Sets

Download

Further Beverage QC Solutions

Bottled Water QC

Learn more

Softdrinks QC

Learn more

Beer QC

Learn more

Spirits QC

Learn more

Please fill out the form to get in touch.