Quality Factors in Malting Barley
Barley quality is influenced by the environment in which it is grown, handled and stored. The sample being evaluated must be representative of the entire lot. Hand evaluation for color, odor, damage and kernel quality is an essential step in the process.
GWM also performs laboratory analysis on site to test for germinative capacity (95%), moisture content (12-13%), kernel plumpness, and acceptable levels of protein (12.5% or less).
The barley selected for processing into malt must meet certain requirements:
- It must be viable and capable of growth.
- It must have a relatively low proportion of protein, the lower the protein the higher the amount of carbohydrate.
- The kernels should be of an even size to allow for even growth.
- The kernels should be plump and uniform in size. Plump corns contain more starch by proportion and therefore have a higher extract potential.
- The kernels must be undamaged and free of disease.
Two types of barley are grown for malting, Spring and Winter varieties. This ensures maximal yields and staggered harvesting which ensures a continuous supply of barley for malting.
Barley varieties are selected from the AMBA recommended list.
Barley is harvested with the use of a combine harvester. The moisture content must be at an acceptable level, typically 12.5% before it can be harvested.