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I think common practice is over feeding our little ones!

Stasis

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I could be inclined to participate. My initial question is this! Wouldn't we need to all participate with the same honey? Could water values contribute to a skewed understanding? If we were able to determine that proline contributes to a better end result can one purchase proline in a quantifiable amount?
No need to use the same honey from member to member. Actually, showing a significant assimilation of proline in different honeys and yeasts would be a more valuable result. The important thing is that each person would have to submit at least 2 batches for testing using the same must: 1 using tosna, 1 using Fermaid K
Water source does not have to be the same from member to member because of the same reason above. Each member would submit a test (tosna) and a control (fermaid k). It is important that the water source is the same for both tests by the same member.

BTW: The Fermaid K must has to be PH buffered. The study shows that ammonia assimilation is inefficient because of drastic drops in PH which can be overcome by buffering. We do not want to risk proline assimilation also being inefficient because of lack of PH buffering.
Meanwhile, amino acids buffer PH very well on their own

Adding even more proline is not the point of my post. What I am saying is that under very specific circumstances (yeast have no option other than eat proline or starve + no DAP + ample aeration) yeast can assimilate proline already found in honey. This is what happened in the study I quoted in my post - the study put yeast in a must with only proline available to eat. The outcome was that yeast consumed proline as long as there was air available (the first 24hrs. they did not continue aerating the must). The person conducting the study was surprised and puts into question whether or not proline really is technically a bad nitrogen source. His study seems to suggest that it does not have to be.
Having said that, I think that if proline is consumed in reasonable amounts in mead at all, we should consider ourselves lucky (at least if we are following TOSNA protocol). I wouldn't suggest adding even more proline. I don't even think proline is the most efficient way to go either, it's just that proline is surprisingly better than given credit for in mead. I think Fermaid O could be more efficient than straight proline for reasons I have not yet posted in these forums. One thing is for sure: Once you stop aerating, proline will not be consumed. This means that adding proline would only work way before the 1/3 break. One day after the last aeration and all proline is useless, unlike other nitrogen sources. Way before the 1/3 break roughly means during the growth phase, which coincidentally is the phase most needing nutrients. During the growth phase yeast can be happy enough eating (some of? most of?) the proline in the honey, no need to add more
 
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Stasis

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Wow! Great work Stasis!
Thanks Gntlknigt. Btw enjoyed hearing you talk on last night's (this morning's ;) ) GotMead Live.
Also, thanks Squatchy, I appreciate your enthusiasm and input. It encourages me to do more research.
Never said thanks to Medsen (because honestly I thought he was giving me a hard time. oops!). But I am also grateful because such challenges spur even more research

EDIT: This thread is getting awfully technical. Should we be thinking about moving this to the Patron section? I'd love sharing with everyone, I'm just afraid that any newbee reading this thread will be deterred of ever making mead again. This thread being a sticky also seems to suggest that this is important info, which it is, but it is certainly not essential for newbees to know this. In my post I also made references to a document found in the thread in the Patron Section "Advanced Nutrients in Mead Making"
 
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Squatchy

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Hey Brother :)

As soon as I left my house and started thinking about this I realized the very response you sent me. I just didn't think much before I replied. I try not to do that but still do from time to time :)

You may be right about putting this over on the Patrons section. I always start things in the newbee's section so they can take advantage of the more experienced guys thoughts. And now that I am writing this it seems counter productive as then new people here on the forum won't have any incentive to pay the fee to become a patron. We patrons all realize that just the recipe section alone is worth more than the $25 dollars. I doubt we speak enough about the patrons section and the new ones have no idea of all the good info over there. I do tell the newbee's that seem interested in the more advanced understanding that they should join and some do.
 
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zofoandrew

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I'm really late to the party here, but someone mentioned earlier that they would like to hear what Ken Schramm is doing nutrient-wise. There was a thread on the mead makers facebook a few weeks ago and someone said something along the lines of "DAP sucks!" Ken replied that (paraphrasing) he thinks the use of DAP is essential to avoid higher alcohols. There were a few other pro mead makers that chimed in saying that they use a mix of organic and inorganic nutrients.

As a home mead maker that used all Fermaid O, this required a little more investigation. I found this PDF written by one of Lallemand's competitors. Here are the vitals:

"During the growth phase, yeast need vitamins, minerals and nitrogen. The presence of alcohol and/or ammonium ions inhibits transport of amino acids through cell membranes and reduces their consumption. To optimize their absorption and efficiency, amino acids should be added at inoculation, before ammonium ions. At this stage, yeast can assimilate amino acids to build ‘healthy’ cells which are resistant to stress conditions and produce aromas. At 1/3 of sugar depletion, yeast start to become stressed and the assimilation of nitrogen is lower. To complete fermentation and increase their alcohol resistance, they need fast and easy nutrients to absorb (ammonium ions) and survival factors (sterols and unsaturated fatty acids) with oxygen. In case of strong nitrogen deficiency [looking at you, mazers], must needs to be corrected by an addition of ammonium ions 24-48 hours after inoculation (after the addition of amino acids). The nutrient additions should be split between inoculation and no later than 1/3 sugar depletion."

I ended up switching my nutrient strategy to Fermaid O then Fermaid K/DAP because:

1. It makes sense to use inorganic nitrogen after fermentation has started (before 9% abv obviously) because its more easily absorbed.

2. Here is another manufacturer saying that organic nitrogen produces aromas. With all the anecdotal evidence backing this up, I'm guessing its true (I know, I'm very scientific).

Please challenge my assumptions! I am trying to get a better understanding of how this all works.
 

Stasis

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Well this is a complex issue which has been tackled throughout all these posts. It is at best unclear whether or not use of any inorganic nutrient is better. let me try to explain, hopefully I leave no major points out:
1. What you are describing is step feeding nutrients up until the 1/3 sugar break. The timings you describe are more or less correctly followed by TOSNA.
2. Wine <> Mead. Low nitrogen musts for grapes is not the same as a low nitrogen must for mead. In mead a low nitrogen must with only dap added could lead to yeast having exclusively ammonia to eat in the later stages. Meanwhile a low nitrogen must for grapes would have plenty of organic nitrogen, especially compared to mead. I linked a study that shows that the most inefficient complex nutrients are actually better than the most easily digestible single nutrient i.e complexity > single source (regardless of efficiency, i.e. organic might be better for mazers)
3. I suspect there are other factors at work. It might be a mix of a smaller yeast population, or yeast being able to assimilate something such as proline (I doubt, but who knows), or Fermaid O having a mix of nutrients which exceeds both our and competitor's expectations.
4. The competition might be wrong. Other people might be wrong. Heck, it seems there's a split of opinion so I could similarly argue that what you said is probably wrong because I found many sources to contradict it.
5. Ken saying something, then a bunch of mazers agreeing has little value. Once a great mazer says something, those who disagree would find it risky to contradict. TOSNA was also created by a great mazer Sergio Moutela, owner of Melovino meadery. Unfortunately Sergio might be less known simply because he has not written a book, but rest assured he probably has enough knowledge to write a book or two of his own. Had Sergio given his opinion instead of Ken it is probable that many mazers would later chime in that they too use organic nitrogen exclusively to great effect. What we could do is create an anonymous poll for those who have used different protocols and ask whether they found that a) inorganic only is best, b) a mix is best, c) organic/fermaid O only is best.
Personally, I've been amazed with the product every time I've followed tosna

EDIT: At the start of this thread I was also incredulous of Fermaid O. The numbers just didn't make sense and I was similarly skeptical. In the meantime I've read up and tried Fermaid O myself and now defend TOSNA. So while I might challenge anyone, rest assured I am very understanding if someone is skeptical of tosna
 
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zofoandrew

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You're right. Wine must is not mead must. But aren't all of those sources that contradict my argument based on the effects of different nutrient schedules on wine musts?

I agree that Ken's word is not gospel (though I do tend to listen to his voice more than others, I admit. Not because of his book, but because he makes killer mead). Just thought I would bring up what some of the professionals are doing since someone asked very early on in the thread. It was also what sparked my interest in nutrient schedules once again. I think the fact that successful meaderies have vastly different nutrient schedules speaks to how much not only the homebrew community, but the entire meadmaking community is in disagreement about this.

As of now, I am not convinced that an all fermaid O regimen is superior to a mix of fermaid O, K, and DAP. I have tried both and have not seen significant differences, though the meads I'm making now are very different than before. I'm agree with Medsen that we need to test this for ourselves and report back our findings since there is so little research done on mead fermentation.
 
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Stasis

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As if this was not already complicated enough I recently read this thread http://www.gotmead.com/forum/showthread.php/12263-Fusel-Alcohol-Reduction
In Medsen's post it seems that the production of fusels depends on the amount of amino acids in the must amongst many other factors, to which Medsen suggested that there might be some merit to using dap. However, since dap might produce other unfavorable conditions such as temp spikes, yeast growth spikes, and ph instability, this might counteract the benefits. Or maybe not and some use of Fermaid k might technically improve tosna.
It is also mentioned that fusels contribute up to 50% of aromas in wine, so some fusels might actually be good.
"What is very important to realize in regards to them is that all of these fusel oils make up about 50% of the total aromatics found in wine"
Could tosna taste better because it produces the correct amount and type of fusels? Is it possible that tosna may not work as good with lager yeasts because then lager yeasts would also produce fusels, yet this time they might not be the correct type and amount? Bray claims he has not managed to get tosna to work with the bomm yeast. Surely someone got TOSNA to work with a lager yeast though?
Would overfeeding fermaid O produce better or worse aromatics/fusels? I suspect that differences might be imperceptible.
 

Squatchy

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Stasis

You may, or may not know. The TOSNA protocol comes right out of the Scotts handbook. The required amounts needed for each strain. Low, medium and high. And the feedings completed before the 1/3 break. The amount of PPM needed of yeast based on gravity. It's all in the book.

BTW. I have heard mention that Sergio is writing a book.
 

Stasis

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I thought only the amount of nitrogen required relative to each strain was shown. I.e 71b is a low requirement yeast while rc212 is a high requirement yeast therefore rc212 requires, for sake of argument, 2x more yan. As far as I know there is no confirmation that tosna or fermaid O should technically work so well. Have scottlabs finally upped their previous statement on how much yan fermaid O provides?
If you were in fact referring to this, then I have also provided a copy of that graph in these posts somewhere
 

caduseus

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I thought only the amount of nitrogen required relative to each strain was shown. I.e 71b is a low requirement yeast while rc212 is a high requirement yeast therefore rc212 requires, for sake of argument, 2x more yan. As far as I know there is no confirmation that tosna or fermaid O should technically work so well. Have scottlabs finally upped their previous statement on how much yan fermaid O provides?
If you were in fact referring to this, then I have also provided a copy of that graph in these posts somewhere
I would use the recommendations of Scott Handbook as they are the experts. "high" yan requirement means 1.25 versus .75 multiplier in TOSNA protocol.
BTW here is the YAN distribution for different supplements:

http://www.vawa.net/YAN Table.pdf
 

Stasis

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My argument was not whether tosna 2.0 is correct for providing adjustments according to strain. My argument is about the effects of what upping the amount of fermaid O, or using fermaid O at all might have. Perhaps using fermaid O and amino acids for lager yeasts might be detrimental RE fusels. Perhaps amino acids for wine yeasts is good. If amino acids and some fusels are good for wine yeasts, have we hit the sweet spot with TOSNA? What if we use greater amounts of Fermaid O like we might for Rc212 or high abv ferments do we get too much fusels and are therefore forced to use some dap?
 

Stasis

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I would use the recommendations of Scott Handbook as they are the experts. "high" yan requirement means 1.25 versus .75 multiplier in TOSNA protocol.
BTW here is the YAN distribution for different supplements:

http://www.vawa.net/YAN Table.pdf
Caduseus, the whole point of this thread is exploring why the chart you linked would seem to be overfeeding yeast. Tosna assumes Fermaid O is more efficient than the values stated in that chart
 

Squatchy

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When I started this thread only a few people were using "O" and most were complaining it was so costly. Most were feeding the same weight value as "K".
I started "going low" to find out. I found we did just fine with much lesser does. AT the time I was not as versed in the 2016 manual as I am since then. I had read ( and glazed right over "the effectiveness " factor. But none the less felt what we were all doing was way over feeding with "O". That's why I wanted to see if others were trying different things as was I to verify my findings.

If you recall. It was after I invited Sergio to come toss in his hat, that a handful of months later he revised the TOSNA page, to include the adjustments for strain specific requirements. As well as cutting the overall amount in half for certain styles of mead. IE, fruit loaded meads such as pyments and cysers.

I'm always open for changes to improve. But I am satisfied enough at the time being that I feel no need to experiment with my YAN calcs and feeding schedule. I did experiment with adding some "K" in my first and second feeding. Lowering my "K" in the second. But each had the same YAN amounts (just in different routes to get there), and I found no discernible differences. So when I ran out of "K" I just moved over to all "O" since I had bought a Kilo of the stuff.

As I write this it just dawned on me. I have recently started using Cy3079 a good bit and the kinetics of that yeast are slower than average. Especially in the early stage. I was about to say that maybe adding DAP early on would help get a biomass blossom to move things along. But now after writing this I think I like the idea of a slow start. Especially considering most of the flavor profiles are established during the growth phase.

Maybe just letting each strain run it's natural course is better than trying to manipulate things. What are your thoughts?
 

Stasis

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Still, that was not entirely my point. Or perhaps it is. Is there no perceptible difference from going totally fermaid k to totally fermaid O? I changed too much of my practices to be sure but I think fermaid O might be cleaner.
More towards my point:
Up until now the only use of tosna with a beer yeast I saw with detailed notes and by an experienced mazer was for the bomm by LOR and he claims he could not make fermaid O work for him. I am wondering if wine yeast has an ability to produce fusels in a good way which lager yeasts do not. 50% of aroma profiles in wine come from fusels. It is possible that tosna does not produce clean ferments, but rather mimics what happens in wine musts a bit better than dap and creates a fusel-y but tasty mead. Meanwhile lager yeasts would simply just create fusel-y mead which is bad. I am more concerned about 'overfeeding' fermaid O and amino acids for beer yeasts than wine yeasts because I want to get to the bottom of bomm yeast's semming quirkiness.
I don't know what letting yeasts run their natural course means.. I think mead making is just about as unnatural for yeast as it gets :p
 

caduseus

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Still, that was not entirely my point. Or perhaps it is. Is there no perceptible difference from going totally fermaid k to totally fermaid O? I changed too much of my practices to be sure but I think fermaid O might be cleaner.
More towards my point:
Up until now the only use of tosna with a beer yeast I saw with detailed notes and by an experienced mazer was for the bomm by LOR and he claims he could not make fermaid O work for him. I am wondering if wine yeast has an ability to produce fusels in a good way which lager yeasts do not. 50% of aroma profiles in wine come from fusels. It is possible that tosna does not produce clean ferments, but rather mimics what happens in wine musts a bit better than dap and creates a fusel-y but tasty mead. Meanwhile lager yeasts would simply just create fusel-y mead which is bad. I am more concerned about 'overfeeding' fermaid O and amino acids for beer yeasts than wine yeasts because I want to get to the bottom of bomm yeast's semming quirkiness.
I don't know what letting yeasts run their natural course means.. I think mead making is just about as unnatural for yeast as it gets :p
I have seen this argument in other posts about K vs. O.
For now until I get a clearer picture, I use both using TOSNA protocol. But since K has twice as much YAN as O, I adjust the dose accordingly. I transition from K to so at the end I am adding only O. This has worked for me.

Just FYI and hope this helps
 

Stasis

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Caduseus, this has nothing to do with Fermaid O's nitrogen content. It's about fusels created because of amino acids, which is something found in O and not dap, and how different yeast might handle amino acids and create fusels.
I think that *maybe* the slower ferments by using Fermaid O actually means the yeast is underfed but this does not matter, or might actually be good for wine yeasts, while it might be detrimental for lager yeasts.

About Fermaid O vs Fermaid K with regards to their yan output, it has been argued that somehow it is as if Fermaid O is providing more yan per gram than Fermaid K. We are not yet sure how this works out. Read Squatchy's earlier reply about feeding less O. The rest of theis thread also talks about this

I now realize squatchy's earlier reply might be because he could only give partial info because of inexperience with lager yeasts, rather than because he misunderstood the question. In which case oops.
 

Dadux

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So I just read this entire thread and i have some things to say:
1-Thanks Stasis for pointing the thread to me. And thanks to all of you who collaborated, its excellent work.
2.Now im going to give an opinion based on my knowledge but that i cant prove because i just dont have the means (for now). Im gonna try use some simils to explain to people who dont study metabolism or have less knowledge about yeast metabolism of my persepective. The idea is to make this comprehensive, since its actually a controverted point and difficult to explain.

I belive "efficiency" is innacurate but adequate somehow. How to put it...you have a fridge full of food that has to last you two days. You can eat it all in one or two meals, or you can make 6 smaller meals. If you make two big early meals you will be hungry after 2 days, but you wont if you eat 6 normal meals. Thats the equivalent with DAP and pure organic nitrogen source (be it O or boiled bread yeast, my favourite choice). So as was said before O is absorbed slowly but constantly if there is no ammonia. DAP is instead fastly absorbed. this can be good in early fermentation because it provides yeast with energy. But if you add too much it can be problematic, same as if you eat too much.
I belive you are perfecly safe with K as long as you do a planned SNA. I just add the total 150-250ppm of nitrogen during 5 days, and then i boil some bread yeast and add it at day 6. This makes the yeast stay healthy during the ferment because they eat all the inorganic and the organic is processed when the inorganic runs out (which is by the time when the yeast cant actually aquire the inorganic because ABV is around 9%).
So my point: Its not only about total YAN, but about YAN during different times of fermentation.
I have to make a note here about dry and liquid yeasts. dry yeats usually are well fed, dry beasts. That means, you put them in an purely O diet and they might be OK because they have some reserves (they are fat guys). Liquid yeasts are skinny guys. You toss em into a purely O must and they will suffer because they are hungry as hell. If you are using liquid yeast you should really try to add some K or DAP at the start. Same way, dont add too much DAP or K at the start if you use dry yeast! (or even none at all, leave them for 12-24h without anything, they wont have much problems, and honey still has some Nitrogen they can use)
With this being said lets go into the gravity. As loveofrose pointed, if you pitch yeast into high SG must and then dont add inorganic nutrients, they have stress from lack of food and osmotic stress (And if its liquid yeast...well you get the idea right?). Stress is cumulative so this is bad.

I am sorry if i am making this way too complicated, i tried to explain myself as clearly as posible, but my point is, total yan is one thing we have to monitor but we must also take into account the YAN levels each moment into the ferment. If you manage to keep some early steady levles yeast will grow fast but not too fast, and then if you manage to provide nutrients fore the late stage survivals this is the key to the perfect fermentation yeast-wise (i say this because i have no clue about aromatics. I cant even begein to analize how this affects esters and phenol production, or glicerol. For now i will stay out of that)
So the key to a good ferment---> change your nitrogen ammounts, times of feeding and type of nutrients depending on your yeast type, gravity, etc. DAP is pure energy for yeast, like sugar. K would be like a steak, has 50-50 (has both ammonia and organic nitrogen), and O/boiled yeast would be like vegetables (most healthy but living permanently on vegetables might not be the best idea, specially if you have hard physical tasks to do, such as brewing)
Also, more nitrogen doesnt mean unused nitrogen. It just means the yeast will usually do the job faster and go to bed full. If you add only 50ppm with O, it might be enough for a steady work, maybe a bit longer, and then just fall exhausted on bed. But you can add 200ppm with K and have equally decent results, fermentation wise.

Once again, as said, this is just theory and my perspective and opinion, which i got through study, reading articles, and making mead. I might just be wrong on some stuff, but to me it makes a lot of sense. Wish I could run some experiment about it but for now its not posible. But some of you might want to give it an try and post your results.

I also think its great this kind of conversations are made about mead, there are many things not explored since its different from beer and wine (especially in this case those two have organic nitrogen from the other ingredients)
 
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smoutela

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FWIW, TOSNA was updated a few months ago on the MMR site now using more realistic YAN requirement levels, even further tailored by yeast strain.

I have been using the TOSNA 2.0 close to a year now at the meadery with great success. Before, our fermentations where ripping along at high activity even at 14% abv mark. We would need to cold crash our tanks to halt it.

TOSNA 2.0 has shown immediately noticeable results to the effect that our fermentations are now coming to a nice slow and steady finish. I believe the dosage rates are now pretty dialed in to the point to more realistic addition rates based on more precise numbers.

Also, STASIS, great find on the research pertaining to proline and the theory as to how it might be the underlining reason with how Fermaid-O works so well while (technically on paper) it underfeeds the yeast. Super interesting that I will most certainly be spending a good amount of time starting to look into.

I wish I had more time to log in and be more active here in GM to have been more a part of the overall conversation, but this has been one of the best threads I've seen in years here.

I, in no way shape or form, fall into the (respectively) "bio-nerd" classification, but you all who are and have shared the workings behind the scenes of what is really going on here is amazing. Kudos to you all.

As a final note, if there is a specific experimentation you could collaborate with deciding on that you would like me to conduct, please do let me know.