To produce hard seltzer, water is carbonized and minimally sweetened, and a little alcohol with – mostly natural – flavoring is mixed in
Velcorin technology from Lanxess is designed to provide cost-effective microbiological stability for hard seltzer drinks. Cold sterilisation makes it impossible for yeast, mold or bacteria to impair shelf life or taste.
Cold sterilisation with Velcorin (dimethyl dicarbonate, DMDC) aims to prevent contamination, particularly in the sensitive canning or bottling area. Its claimed to be highly efficient with small quantities of the active ingredient. It applies as much to hard seltzer as to other microbiologically sensitive drink categories such as beer or mixed wine-based products.
Velcorin is dosed into the drink just before canning or bottling. The active ingredient penetrates the cell wall to get inside yeast, fungus or bacteria cells and deactivates vital enzymes, thus killing the cells. Excess DMDC reacts with the water in the drink within a few hours. This hydrolysis process produces small amounts of methanol and carbon dioxide, which are also present as natural constituents in many fruit and vegetable juices as well as wine. Lanxess says this leaves no traces of Velcorin itself in the end product, ensuring no negative effect on the drink’s sensory properties.
The use of Velcorin is authorised for various drinks in Europe, the USA, and many other countries. The EU’s Scientific Committee on Food, the FDA, and the Joint Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA) of the FAO and the WHO have documented the product’s harmlessness.
Lanxess also provides a dosing technology and service package. This package covers technical questions as well as support with the application technology, for instance in microbiological analysis or production plant audits. The Velcorin dosing units can be integrated into new or existing canning or bottling systems and optionally connected to their automation technology. Filling capacities of 600 to approximately 72,000 litres per hour are supported. Velcorin is compatible with all packaging types: glass or PET bottles, cans, pouches (aluminum bags) or cartons.