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Big expansion on tap for downtown Dayton brewery

Dayton Beer Company to add its own canning line, other improvements to boost production

The Dayton area’s already robust craft-brewery scene is about to get another boost.

The Dayton Beer Company has launched an expansion project that will increase production by as much as 35 percent and will make other improvements at the downtown Dayton brewery, according to DBC founder Pete Hilgeman.

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Here’s how Hilgeman described the project and its significance: 

“We are finally adding our own in-house canning line,” Hilgeman said. “Along with the in-house canning line we are adding filtration systems to increase our quality-control measures and prevent any re-fermentation in outgoing cans. I've been working on this for 18 months so its nice to finally get it finalized!”

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The project will bring expanded fermentation tanks and space, lagering tanks, as well as a separate barrel-aging tank, which together will boost DBC’s production output by about 35 percent, Hilgeman said. The expansion is necessary because of growing production of DBC’s Lost Tunnel brand, the desire to expand the brewery’s barrel-aging program, and the return of Dayton Beer Company’s product distribution to in-house, he said.

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“The most significant step to this expansion is greater quality control measures for our canning production,” the DBC founder said. “All of our beers that went into cans were unfiltered and had residual yeast present which can and have caused stability issues. Due to not having our own line, we would also have to combine canning runs of different styles on the same day thus decreasing several quality control measures.”

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 “The addition of our own filtration and canning line allows us to filter out any remaining yeast to increase the shelf stability of our packaged products, allow greater quality control measures for each individual canning batch, and decrease several burdens on production timelines. Our expanded tank production allows us to focus on growing both brands without sacrificing tank space. It also allows us to increase our lagering capabilities.”

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Most of the improvements are expected to be installed and operational by the end of August, “although the lagering tanks are being custom-built, so those won't be installed until later this year,” Hilgeman said. 

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Dayton Beer Company opened in 2012 as a microbrewery and tasting room at 912 E. Dorothy Lane in Kettering before launching its much larger production brewery and tap room in downtown Dayton in April 2015. Two years ago, in August 2016, it expanded to add food service to its brewery and tap room. In October 2017, it added its Lost Tunnel second label for what it called its “eccentric” beers.

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