How to Save Big on Homebrewing Beer & Wine
Nothing is more exciting than testing your first batch of home brewed beer or wine! Or is there? How about saving 25-45% on the cost of your home brewing and wine making supplies. Many retailers and websites will sell you the necessary ingredients (grains, hops, fruit puree, etc) in single portion or small packages, but it will end up costing you more to purchase your ingredients this way. Instead, order larger bulk quantities, and use a digital scale to accurately measure the required portion size for each batch. (The savings on your first bulk purchase of supplies should easily pay for the cost of the digital scale.)
On a popular home brewing supply website wheat can be purchased for $1.49 per pound, but if you purchase in bulk a 55 pound bag costs just $60.00. That works out to $1.09 per pound; you would save $21.95 or about 26%! The amount you save depends largely on which ingredients you purchase. We saw the biggest savings, upwards of 45%, in the fruit purees used in wine making.
Try to buy locally to save on shipping costs as well, or look for free shipping specials. If you must shop online you should still save on shipping (per pound of ingredient) when buying in bulk.
Be sure to keep your ingredients in a cool, dry place, preferably in a sealed container. Check out the forums listed below for more information about storing ingredients purchased in bulk.
IMPORTANT: Be sure to get a scale that measures with increments of 0.1 ounce or 1 gram.
The Escali Primo digital scale is a popular model in home brewing circles, and you can check it out here.