At top you will find microscopes and related products offered by White Labs (visit the Yeastman system to acquire products), and below we offer help in using your microscope.
Microscopes and products offered by White Labs
Objectives 4X, 10X, 40X, and 100X. (100X needs immersion oil, see item MA1450 below). Meets the craft brewers needs. Monocular head (rotatable 360 degrees), mechanical stage with dual controls, separate coarse and fine focus, built-in 20 watt incandescent light, and stain resistant, enamel finish.
MA1400 Microscope Kit
Contains all parts necessary to do routine microscope analysis: Hemacytometer, Methylene blue stain, box each of microscope slides and cover slips, immersion oil, lens paper, counter. Save almost 10% by ordering complete kit.
A good quality control program – whether you make beer at home or produce millions of barrels a year – requires a good quality control program. And nothing is more important to quality control than the consistent use of a microscope. You should use the microscope regularly so that you can learn to identify the health of your yeast, which is the most important ingredient in beer.
We hope in this section to provide you with photos of healthy and unhealthy yeast cells so that you can compare these to your own microscope work. White Labs has a fluorescent microscope equipped with a camera, and we used this camera to take the photos in this section. The photos will be updated regularly.
The photo above shows healthy yeast, in this case WLP001 California Ale Yeast. The photo shows one of 25 squares found on a hemacytometer counting chamber. The hemacytometer, which was first developed for counting blood cells, is the most commonly used device for determining the number of cells per unit volume of a suspension.
The above photo shows all 25 squares of the hemacytometer counting chamber.
The above is an example of a yeast sample that has undergone a Gram stain. The yeast cells stain positive. It is a good idea to perform this test on your yeast so that you know what they look like compared to unwanted bacteria. The Gram stain kits are available from White Labs.
Wild yeast, above, are typically 30 to 50 percent smaller than brewers yeast. The wild yeast pictured here, which were grown on plates, also underwent a Gram stain like the brewers yeast in the photo above it.
Lactobacilli, above, are slender rods that stain Gram positive (purple) to Gram variable (purple to red).
In the future, we plan many more updates for this section. We plan to post a tutorial for cell counting. We will also compare wild yeast to brewers yeast in more detail. Additionally, we plan on posting photos of the various yeast strains we grow so that you can see the sometimes dramatic differences between strains.