Patent No. 2998351A: Process For The Continuous Malting Of Grain

Today in 1961, US Patent 2998351 A was issued, an invention of Noel Keir, Frederick Richard Graesser, Wilbert E. Stoddart and Douglas L. Thompson, assigned to Dominion Malting Ontario Ltd., for their “Process for the Continuous Malting of Grain.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes this summary:

The present invention avoids most of the disadvantages of the prior art and provides for simple continuous processing through which not only complication is avoided but the processing may be reduced to a period of three days or less in comparison with approximately ten days or more, and is subject to minute control which has been difficult in prior batch processes. In fact the present continuous process provides for continuous processing through stages or zones maintaining constant conditions, varied as to one another, according to requirements necessary in regard to the character of the grain, and through which the grain continuously passes in effect to provide the continuous yield of a substantially uniform malt. Moreover, other attendant advantages result as labour required per unit of production will be reduced, resulting in greater economy, the weight and strength of complete equipment will be reduced and initial costs of buildings thus lessened; whereas the process provides for an extremely wide range of control as to time and processing, moisture content and temperature gradient, so that the conditions of manufacture may be adapted to the quality and type of grain being processed as to provide for the production of malt of superior quality and of generally uniform character in which all factors of production have been closely controlled throughout.

The invention generally embodies the steps of continuously forming and moving a bed of grain in a predetermined path, subjecting said moving grain bed to intermittent periods of water spray and periods of rest and periods of humid aeration at temperatures between 50 and 100 F., and finally moving said bed through a drying zone at elevated temperatures. Preferably the processing includes in said steps a period of drenching the bed followed by dry aeration. The grain may be introduced to the processing steps in any suitable manner, such as by pumping it together with water to the point of preliminary processing, which may start with the dispersing of the grain in water, and allowing the sound grain to settle, while the lighter grain and low gravity extraneous material may be continuously removed from the surface of the water body in which it is dispersed and delivered to a suitable recovery unit.


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Patent No. 3896001A: Malting Processes

Today in 1973, US Patent 3896001 A was issued, an invention of James Barrett, Brian Heys Kirsop, and Godfrey Henry Oliver Palmer, assigned to Brewing Patents Ltd., for their “Malting Processes.” Here’s the Abstract:

A process for the production of malt comprises removing a part of the husk of the barley, steeping the barley, treating the barley with aqueous mineral acid and with gibberellic acid, and allowing the barley to germinate. The combination of treatment steps is claimed to improve the rate of germination.


Patent No. 4277505A: Process For The Malting Of Grain

Today in 1981, US Patent 4277505 A was issued, an invention of Simon B. Simpson, for his “Process for the Malting of Grain.” Here’s the Abstract:

Germination of cereal grain in malting is carried out by passing steeped grain to and through a series of six closed spaced discrete vessels in succession. The grain is maintained in each vessel for about a day and in each vessel is subjected to an upward flow of humidified at temperated air. The grain is turned either in a vessel or through transference to the next vessel. Transference from one vessel to the other is carried out by discharging the grain from each vessel along a lower conveyor to an elevator which raises the grain to an upper conveyor that discharges the grain down into the next vessel. Grain leaves the last vessel of the series as green malt and then passes to a malt kiln where it is dried to a desired moisture level.


Patent No. 2245650A: Grain Separating Machine

Today in 1941, US Patent 2245650 A was issued, an invention of Ovie N. Christopherson, for his “Grain Separating Machine.” There’s no Abstract, but it’s described generally as and “invention provid[ing] an improved highly efficient machine for the separation of various grains or seeds according to their thickness or transverse diameter,” making two claims:

1. In a separating machine, a separating screen, means for simultaneously imparting to said screen endwise reciprocating and transverse movements, said screen having elongated slots extended in the direction of its longitudinal reciprocating movement, the transverse movement thereof :being crosswise of the direction of said slots.

2. The structure defined in claim 1 in which said screen is in the form of a rotary drum and the transverse movement thereof being in a constant direction.


Patent No. 3450600A: Malting Apparatus In Series

Today in 1969, US Patent 3450600 A was issued, an invention of James Richard Allan Pollack, Alan Aldred Pool, and Graham John Ellis, assigned to Arthur Guinness Sons & Co. Dublin, The Irish Mallsters Association, and Rimer Mfg. Co. Ltd., for their “Malting Apparatus In Series.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes this summary:

[This invention is an] Apparatus for malting steeped cereal grain comprising two vessels one of which is a malting vessel and the other a storage vessel. The internal surface of the malting vessel converges downwardly toward the outlet. Sweeper means within the malting vessel is gyrationally mounted adjacent the outlet, grain engaging means provided on the sweeper, and the sweeper is adapted to sweep over substantially the whole area of the convergent surface for loosening the grain to be discharged. Means associated with the malting vessel for adjusting temperature, humidity, and rate of air flow therein to condition the cereal grain. First transfer means for conveying grain discharged from the malting vessel to the storage vessel. Second transfer means associated with the storage vessel for returning to the inlet means of the malting vessel grain discharged from the storage vessel.


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Patent No. 2641357A: Device For Cleaning Out The Bottoms Of Grain Elevators

Today in 1953, US Patent 2641357 A was issued, an invention of Lester Jones (presumably not the economist with the NBWA), assigned to Pabst Brewing Co., for his “Device for Cleaning Out the Bottoms of Grain Elevators.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it states that the “invention appertains to the handling of grain, and more particularly to a novel cleaning attachment for a grain elevator.”

In the handling of grain by bucket elevators, there is a clearance between the bottom wall or pan of the elevator housing and the elevator buckets. Consequently, a certain small portion of grain lies in an inactive state on this bottom wall or pan. If this grain is not periodically removed, there is danger that the same will spoil or become infected and contaminate the grain passing through the elevator. This condition is recognized, and provisions have been made to remove the inactive grain, but in all constructions with which I am familiar, it is necessary to shut down the elevator to effect the cleaning thereof. Consequently, there is a tendency to put off the cleaning of the elevator as long as possible.


Patent No. 650377A: Malting-Drum

Today in 1900, US Patent 650377 A was issued, an invention of John F. Dornfeld, for his “Malting-Drum.” There’s no Abstract, though it’s described this way in the application:

The primary object of the invention is to provide, in a malting-drum, an improved construction for positively stirring the steeped barley contained in the drum, whereby the contents of the drum are properly stirred and mixed at all times.

A further object is to provide an improved means for introducing water into the malt whenever necessary in an even and regular quantity and in such manner that the water is thoroughly mixed with the malt.


Save The Bees, Save The Beer

Beer, of course, is an agricultural product, two of its main ingredients are very dependent on a good harvest. Both hops and barley (and other grains such as wheat and rye) grow best when they’re planted in the right place and the conditions are present to encourage their best selves. I received an e-mail a few days ago with the intriguing message. “Bees pollinate 1/3 of our food, including the hops used to make beer. Save the bees, save the beer.”


The e-mail was about an Indiegogo campaign to create a “community open to anyone who cares about bees, the environment and food,” called BeeWithMe, which will consist of “a dynamic new website that teaches people how easy and fun it is to raise a diverse range of gentle bees.” Unless you’ve been cryogenically frozen recently, you no doubt have heard that bees are disappearing from our environment, which could have devastating consequences for our food supply and our life cycle more generally. Find out how to participate at You Can Help Save the Bees, which begins:

Imagine a world without bees. There would be no blueberries, no cherries, no pumpkins – not even beer.

Here’s the problem: Most farmers depend on a single type of bee to pollinate our food and that bee, the honey bee, has been struggling.

You can be part of the solution and protect our food supply by raising gentle, native bees in your backyard or supporting someone else who does.

Keep your favorite foods on the table by contributing today and joining the BeeWithMe network that will collaborate to raise more native bees and grow more food.

Most of the pledge levels involve getting your own bees, some to simply release in your back yard, up to everything you need to raise your own bees. There are also teacher’s packages for classrooms and levels for entire garden clubs and communities. Please bee generous. And remember, save the bees, save the beer.


Patent No. 3796143A: Device For The Germination And Drying Of Malt

Today in 1974, US Patent 3796143 A was issued, an invention of Gisbert Schlimme and Manfred Tschirner, for his “Device for the Germination and Drying of Malt.” Here’s the Abstract:

A device for the germination and drying of malt charged onto the radially outer portion of an annular rotating rack and gradually shifted radially inwardly by means of rotary worm means extending radially across said annular rack and being suspended by threaded spindles for movement downwardly and upwardly between charge and discharge openings in an outer wall surrounding said annular rack.


Patent No. 3647473A: Malting Grain

Today in 1972, US Patent 3647473 A was issued, an invention of Peter Michael Howlett, and Keith Christopher Stowell, for their “Malting Grain.” Here’s the Abstract:

A process and apparatus for dehusking cereal grain by a dry mechanical method at a temperature not above about 105 DEG F., and wherein the moisture content of the grain is above about 8 percent by weight in order to damage the grain so that substantial rootlet growth is prevented without substantially damaging the aleurone layer. The dehusked grain is subsequently malted and there are advantages compared with conventional malting of husked grain.