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Letter from the President:
White Labs expansion update

By Chris White

We are in the midst of vastly expanding our production capacity — and this could have significant impacts for our customers in North America and around the world.
While we are not at this time expanding our space — we remain in the same San Diego manufacturing facility — we are making much better use of the space by going “up” and bringing in new technology. We are nearly halfway complete with this ambitious project, which in the end will increase our capacity by 50 percent.
As of this writing we are installing three German and Czech-made 40-barrel fermentation tanks. We believe so much in this technology that we are acting as a North American sales agent for these Frings aeration equipment, which are especially well-suited for regional and large breweries seeking to grow their own yeast.
At the same time, we are taking measures to increase the efficiency in our other 100 smaller fermentation vessels. In short we have taken measures so that we can use these smaller tanks more often each week.
We expect all of t h e s e changes to be in effect by the end of wine season.
It is too bad it could not happen earlier, because while wine season is relatively short, it is a time of a rising number of orders. For the last few years we have run shifts 24 hours a day during these months, and we expect the same thing to take place this year.
Nevertheless, the changes we have made have already produced tangible results.
Our production capacity is up 20 percent compared to the same time last year. You might wonder who is spearheading all of this work. Rest assured it is not taking away any of our focus on current projects and clients. That’s because we brought in a professional that many of you have surely heard of to help with this expansion project.
His name is Lee Chase, former head brewer at Stone Brewing Co. He is the perfect person for the job not just because of his respect and experience in the brewing community but also his specific experience at Stone, where he oversaw the expansion from a 30-barrel facility to a 150-barrel German designed and manufactured brewhouse.
The new facility opened at the end of 2005. By the way, in case you do not know, the older facility was occupied by Pizza Port, the San Diego-area brewery with a nationwide reputation. I will continue to update you on our progress and hope to hear your comments on the expansion project.

Chris White is President of White Labs Inc. and is a chemistry and biochemistry lecturer at the University of California, San Diego. He has a Ph.D in biochemistry. Feel free to write him about this column.