Brewery QC - Purchasing Lab Equipment
Guide to Purchasing Lab Equipment
The following is a suggested guide to purchasing lab equipment and supplies. This list provides affordable and more expensive options for purchasing all of the basic lab equipment needed for a brewery lab and many of these products are the ones used within our own lab.
Microscopes used in our lab skills course are from Omax. This website is great for quality microscopes, and they generally have decent sales. Other online companies offering affordable microscopes are Microscope.net and AmScope, just make sure to purchase a microscope with a 40X objective lens and moveable stage.
Affordable: https://omaxmicroscope.com or, https://www.amscope.com
Autoclave pricing depends on your needs. We use large high capacity autoclaves (70L internal volume). For most breweries, these are overkill. A simple pressure cooker can be used to prepare agar media or sterilize tools. Alternatively, American Sterilizer is the budget autoclave option, while Tuttnauer would be the high-end option.
Haemocytometers can be purchased on Amazon for relatively cheap but are low quality and hard to use. For a better quality haemocytometer like the ones used today, you can find them at Cynmar and the exact one used today was $79.70 CAN.
(Expensive – link provided) https://yoursciencehub.com/bright-lined-hemacytometer-counting-chamber-dbl.html
Affordable: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=hemocytometer&crid=20D9RCN777NW9&sprefix=hemocy%2Caps%2C151&ref=nb_sb_ss_i_1_6 (not recommended).
Micropipettes vary significantly in price and quality. As long as the pipettes are only used for sampling, rather than precise research, affordable micropipettes will be OK to use. Expensive, high quality micropipettes can be purchased through Gilson (about $300-500 CAN each). Affordable pipettes can be purchased from MiniPCR for $69 each, or you can get a complete set of four with a range of volumes for $316.00 CAN. These products also go on sale frequently and perform just fine, however, do eventually wear out if used frequently.
In addition to the above equipment, general lab consumables are needed as well. This includes items such as sterile sample tubes, disposable pipettes, sterile petri dishes, pipette guns, pipette tips, pyrex glassware, inoculation loops, and kimwipes. These items can be purchased from any scientific supplier, but we recommend Froggabio which is fairly inexpensive and generally the cheapest option, or Fisher Scientific which costs a little extra (and may be the better option for glassware).
Chemicals needed for plating media (ex, WLN, MRS), cleaning and sanitation in the brewery (70% isopropanol), as well as for equipment sterilization (95% ethanol) can be purchased through Sigma Aldrich or Weber Scientific. Both of these companies are scientific suppliers and are equally affordable, but we recommend buying chemicals from them to ensure better quality products. Other scientific suppliers mentioned (Frogga, Fisher) may also sell these products.
Additional companies to consider for lab consumables is VWR and Cole Parmer: