Whilst cider making and brewing have been around for literally thousands of years it wasn’t until relatively recently that the benefits of using polyethylene tanks for fermentation and storage became apparent. Previously stainless steel tanks had come to the fore as being a suitable receptacle that could be cleaned and sterilised easily and in which harmful bacterium could be expelled. The only problem with stainless steel tanks is the initial cost outlay.
Then came along MDPE or mid-density polyethylene to you and me. When tanks made of Food Grade MDPE are produced using a rotational moulding technique they are immensely strong and are easily adaptable to many different uses across a wide range of industries. They are also very easy to clean and sterilise and their construction limits the amount of non-essential bacterial growth often found in tanks constructed using other materials. An added bonus is that they don’t cost an arm and a leg and are readily available and easy to install.
In the same way, that craft beer took off some years ago, craft ciders are now making their way into the arena and cider makers are springing up all over the Country. Cider apples are best harvested when fully ripe, which dependent upon variety, tends to be mainly in October with some varieties ready in mid-September and others in early November. For the small to medium cider maker harvested apples are normally stored for between two to four weeks before the process to convert them into the refreshing drink we know and love commences. This is to allow the starch present in the apples at the time of harvesting to convert to sugar before fermentation can begin.
During the process of fermentation yeast will settle at the bottom of the fermentation tank and the first racking occurs in order that the cider is not laying above the yeast for longer than necessary. A cone bottomed fermentation tank allows sediment to collect more easily and with the addition of a racking port the cider can be carefully siphoned off into a secondary tank for further fermentation or storage. Generally, by late Spring or early Summer following the harvesting and processing of the apples, the cider should be ready for drinking and bottling.
Enduratank is able to offer a range of 33 closed top, cone bottom tanks in sizes ranging from 250 litres up to 30,000 litres and with bottom cone angles of 5°, 13°, 30° and 60°. All are supplied with galvanised support frames as standard although tanks can be purchased without frames if required. One hundred per cent rustproof and manufactured in the United Kingdom, our cone tanks come fitted with a full drain outlet and carry a 10-year guarantee. They are available in black, green or the more useful natural (this colour allows the content level of the tank to be easily seen) and the optional requirement of a racking port can be fitted during the production stage.
All our tanks can be supplied from stock so get ready for the forthcoming cider-making season and chose an Enduratank cone tank!