European Food Research and Technology

, Volume 232, Issue 2, pp 191–204 | Cite as

Protein changes during malting and brewing with focus on haze and foam formation: a review

  • Elisabeth Steiner
  • Martina Gastl
  • Thomas Becker
Review Paper


Beer is a complex mixture of over 450 constituents and, in addition, it contains macromolecules such as proteins, nucleic acids, polysaccharides, and lipids. In beer, several different protein groups, originating from barley, barley malt, and yeast, are known to influence beer quality. Some of them play a role in foam formation and mouthfeel, and others are known to form haze and have to be precipitated to guarantee haze stability, since turbidity gives a first visual impression of the quality of beer to the consumer. These proteins are derived from the malt used and are influenced, modified, and aggregated throughout the whole malting and brewing process. During malting, barley storage proteins are partially degraded by proteinases into amino acids and peptides that are critical for obtaining high-quality malt and therefore high-quality wort and beer. During mashing, proteins are solubilized and transferred into the produced wort. Throughout wort boiling proteins are glycated and coagulated being possible to separate those coagulated proteins from the wort as hot trub. In fermentation and maturation process, proteins aggregate as well, because of low pH, and can be separated. The understanding of beer protein also requires knowledge about the barley cultivar characteristics on barley/malt proteins, hordeins, protein Z, and LTP1. This review summarizes the protein composition and functions and the changes of malt proteins in beer during the malting and brewing process. Also methods for protein identification are described.


Proteins Barley Malt Beer Haze formation Foam formation 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elisabeth Steiner
    • 1
  • Martina Gastl
    • 1
  • Thomas Becker
    • 1
  1. 1.Lehrstuhl für Brau- und GetränketechnologieTechnische Universität MünchenFreisingGermany

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