Extract Efficiency and Typical Yield

The maximum yield is just that, a value you might get if all the mash variables (e.g. pH, temperature, time, viscosity, grind, phase of the moon, etc.) lined up and 100% of the starches where converted to sugars. But most brewers, even commercial brewers, don't get that value in their mashes. Most brewers will approach 80 - 90% of the maximum yield (i.e. 90% of the maximum 80%). This percentage is referred to as a brewer's extract efficiency and the resulting yield is the typical yield from our mash. The extract efficiency is dependent on the mash conditions and the lautering system. This will be discussed further in the chapters to follow: Chapter 13 - What is Mashing? and Chapter 14 - The Methods of Mashing.

For the purposes of our discussion of the typical yields for the various malts and adjuncts, we will assume an extract efficiency of 85%, which is considered to be very good for homebrewers. A few points less yield (i.e. 80 or 75% extraction efficiency), is still considered to be good extraction. A large commercial brewery would see the 10% reduction as significant because they are using thousands of pounds of grain a day. For a homebrewer, adding 10% more grain per batch to make up for the difference in extraction is a pittance.

Table 9 - Typical Malt Yields in Points/Pound/Gallon

Malt TypeMax Yield Max PPGTypical PPG (85%) PPG Steep
2 Row Lager Malt 80 37 31 --
6 Row Base Malt 76 35 30 --
2 Row Pale Ale Malt 81 38 32 --
Biscuit/Victory Malt 75 35 30 --
Vienna Malt 75 35 30 --
Munich Malt 75 35 30 --
Brown Malt 70 32 28 8*
Dextrin Malt 70 32 28 4*
Light Crystal (15L) 75 35 30 14*
Pale Crystal (40L) 74 34 29 22
Medium Crystal (60L) 74 34 29 18
Dark Crystal (120L) 72 33 28 16
Special B 68 31 27 16
Chocolate Malt 60 28 24 15
Roast Barley 55 25 22 21
Black Patent Malt 55 25 22 21
Wheat Malt 79 37 31 --
Rye Malt 63 29 25 --
Oatmeal (Flaked) 70 32 28 --
Corn (Flaked) 84 39 33 --
Barley (Flaked) 70 32 28 --
Wheat (Flaked) 77 36 30 --
Rice (Flaked) 82 38 32 --
Malto-DextrinPowder 100 40 (40) (40)
Sugar (Corn, Cane) 100 46 (46) (46)

Malt % Yield data obtained and averaged from several sources. Steeping data is experimental and was obtained by steeping 1 lb. in 1 gal at 160'F for 30 minutes. All malts were crushed in a 2 roller mill at the same setting.

* The low extraction from steeping is attributed to unconverted, insoluble starches as revealed by an iodine test.


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