Chapter 14

Winery Cleaning and Sanitation

Water Quality

Water quality is not only important in winemaking but also in cleaning and sanitation. Impurities in water can significantly reduce the effectiveness of the cleaning and sanitizing chemicals. Most municipal water that has been properly treated to keep microorganism below harmful levels is fine to use for rinsing. Well-water may however contain high levels or bacteria that could affect the wine, unless it is properly treated. In general, water should be potable, free from suspended particulates, and low in compounds that impart odor and flavor (e.g., earthy or musty odors). Water contains varying amounts of calcium, magnesium and other alkali metals, that, collectively, contribute to hardness. The United States Geological Survey (USGS) definition for water hardness levels is shown in Table 14.1. Hardness is most commonly expressed as milligrams of calcium carbonate equivalent per liter.

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