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How to become a Technical Brewer

technical brewer careers

What does a Technical Brewer do?

Technical Brewers manage the production of beers and lagers, ensuring quality and consistency. Brewing is a biochemical process where malted barley is boiled with hops and water, cooled and then fermented with yeast so the natural sugars turn to alcohol. A high level of scientific and technical knowledge is required.

The work is likely to include:

  • checking temperature and quality
  • maintaining detailed records
  • assessing suppliers
  • overseeing technical developments
  • taking responsibility for stock control
Those employed by large breweries might have responsibility for just one part of the production process, such as fermentation, packaging or quality control, whereas in a small or micro-brewery, brewers are more likely to be involved at all stages. Managerial duties are often included in the brewer’s role.

Technical brewers can also be responsible for the development of new beers either seasonally or according to public demand.

What's the working environment like working as a Technical Brewer?

Technical brewers usually work 40 hours a week. Due to the necessity for regular process checking, brewers tend to work on a shift system which includes weekends.

Much of the work is based in the production area overseeing the brewing process. This is a noisy industrial environment where protective clothing is necessary. Some duties are conducted in offices.

What does it take to become a Technical Brewer?

As a technical brewer you will need:

  • advanced scientific knowledge, particularly in biochemistry
  • engineering knowledge and an understanding of machinery
  • strong practical skills including decision making and problem solving abilities
  • a good standard of physical fitness
  • management and organisational skills in order to lead a production team
  • strong oral and written communication skills
  • sound business sense, especially when working with a small organisation.

Technical Brewer Career Opportunities

The majority of posts are with large breweries that run their own training programmes for graduates. Those with production units across the world may offer employment abroad.

Vacancies are limited but may be advertised locally and on graduate recruitment websites, the British Beer and Pub Association can also provide contact details of a number of breweries.

Experienced brewers can progress to become senior/head brewers or technical directors, although they may need to move company in order to progress. Some brewers opt for self-employment, setting up their own micro-breweries to produce speciality beverages. It is also possible to move into other areas, such as distribution, purchasing or health and safety.

Further information

If you would like to know anything about Technical Brewer that does not appear on Hotcourses, further information can be found below.

Institute of Brewing and Distilling
33 Clarges Street
Tel: 020 7499 8144

British Beer and Pub Association
Market Towers
1 Nine Elms Lane
Tel: 020 7627 9191

Courses to help you become a Technical Brewer