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Steamericas, Inc., the first U.S. subsidiary of SJE Corporation, an industrial steamer manufacturer out of Busan, South Korea, is a leading supplier of the most environmentally friendly and cost-effective cleaning solutions for the food and agricultural industries throughout North and South America.

Today, the woman-owned industrial cleaning equipment company headquartered in Inglewood, CA announces that a study conducted this year by Lebrun Labs LLC confirms that dry steam vapor reaches hotter temperatures inside oak barrels in a fraction of the amount of time that it takes more traditional hot water pressure washing methodologies.

According to Yujin Anderson, Steamericas, Inc.’s General Manager, the study looked at how quickly hot water and dry steam vapor increased the barrel temperature to the degree necessary to kill yeast strains such as brettanomyces and other microorganisms that can grow deep inside the wood staves.

The Lebrun Labs study found that it took 30+ minutes for 180-degree water to reach lethal temperatures versus dry steam vapor, which reached efficacy in just moments. 

“The dry steam molecule is smaller and able to penetrate pores more effectively to get those temperatures high,” confirms Anderson. “The industry has been told that steam is better than hot water, but this is the first scientific data comparing the two that proves it.”

Anderson points out that dry steam sanitizes and rehydrates barrels at the same time, uses significantly less water in the cleaning process and requires no chemicals, which provides a significant environmental and cost saving benefit to wineries.

“Dry steam uses between one quarter to a half gallon of water per barrel,” Anderson reports. “Compared with having to use and then treat 60 gallons of water with hot water pressure cleaning – that’s huge.”

Use of dry steam in barrel sanitation has been gaining popularity among winemakers thanks to the fact that while chemical based barrel sanitation methods – including ozone treatment – can be effective on contact surface, they are not effective sanitizers when it comes to microorganisms hibernating inside the wood staves such as Brettanomyces.

Steamericas, Inc. is the North American distribution and support center of the Optima Steamer™, offering products that range from all electric dry steam generators to fuel run steamers for mobile solutions or for those without access to three phase electricity.

Live demonstrations of the Optima Steamer™ and Steamericas, Inc.’s Barrel Wand Tool, a device developed specifically to fit steam to wood barrels in a way that allows users to monitor temperature inside the barrel and prevents damage, will be available at Hotsy Pacific’s Booth #235 during WIN Expo this coming December and at Steamericas, Inc.’s  Booth #1905 during the Unified Symposium in February, 2020. For more information and to request a complimentary product demonstration, go to www.steam.am/wine.

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