Sept. 17 date set to dedicate new fermentation equipment

When most people look at a tall, frosty pint of beer, they don’t immediately think of science. But perhaps they should. Every keg is the product of some pretty sophisticated microbiology. Beer depends on the mastery of fermentation, a process by which microscopic organisms convert sugars or other molecules into new products—in the case of beer, alcohol. To help advance that science—and train the next generation of fermentation experts—brewing giant MillerCoors has donated a complete set of pilot-scale brewing equipment to the UW-Madison’s bacteriology department.

The gift, worth more than $100,000, marks the beginning of an ongoing relationship between members of the university’s microbiology community and experts at MillerCoors’ Milwaukee brewing plant, and will be used to launch a new campus course on fermentation science.

A ribbon cutting ceremony for the UW-Madison/MillerCoors pilot-scale brewing equipment will take place at 3 p.m., Wednesday, Sept. 17, in the Microbial Sciences Building’s Ebling Symposium Center, located on campus at 1550 Linden Drive.

The ceremony’s speakers, including MillerCoors Vice President David Ryder, UW-Madison Chancellor Biddy Martin and College of Agricultural and Life Sciences Dean Molly Jahn, will be available to answer media questions at 3:30 p.m. in the building’s atrium.