Chapter 8

Malt Milling

Malt Handling and Storage

Malts can be purchased either in bags or in bulk shipments. Small craft breweries are more likely to purchase their malt in bags that weigh 50 to 55 lbs., which is particularly the case when purchasing specialty malt. Almost all other breweries purchase malt in bulk shipments transported either by truck or rail as bulk shipment offers the greatest savings in malt price.

Weighing and Cleaning

For larger breweries, a typical flow of malt upon arrival at the brewery begins by weighing the vehicle on the weigh-bridge and unloading the malt via a hopper. After unloading, the vehicle is tare-weighted, with the difference in weights being the weight of the malt.


Once weighed and cleaned, the malt is conveyed to silos for storage. Silos are constructed of either corrugated galvanized steel, which is considerably cheaper or welded steel, which reportedly offers a higher level of protection from moisture. The minimum size for silos is usually 800 cubic feet, large enough to accommodate one truckload of malt.


Before milling, malt is removed from the silo and transferred to the feed hopper supported on a mechanical platform located at the grist case-a buffer containing the milled malt before the mash vessel.

Grist Case

After milling, the milled malt is transferred to a temporary storage hopper, commonly called the grist case, that feeds the mash tun.

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