Inoculation

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Brewer pitching yeast into a wort

In brewing, inoculation is when a yeast starter culture is introduced (pitched) into a wort, must or wash. By inoculating with a specific yeast strain(s), that yeast will be able to grow more quickly than wild yeasts or bacteria. The result is that the preferred yeast characteristics will dominate over any wild yeasts that could have infected the wort/must/wash. By changing the amount of yeast, referred to as the pitching rate, the fermentation rate will change.

Bacteria can also be used in inoculations. An example of this is the use of muck or dunder in Rum or Lactobacillus in whiskey.

See also Pitching.

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