Equipment that is loved, loves you back

Starting a brewery is hard work. In the beginning and even up through the first 2 years everyone involved is wearing multiple hats, working long hours and feels like the work is never finished.  During this grind performance metrics last thing on anyone’s mind.

Successful breweries are placing equipment performance metrics on the top of their list. Equipment performance metrics are standard procedures to make sure you are getting the most out of your machines. If done consistently, they can uncover problems before the equipment stops working on you.

Take the time, early, to set up performance metrics.  Work with the people who sold you your equipment to understand what it was designed to do. Have them provide you a 3, 6, 9, 12 month output chart, and the maintenance required to achieve max performance.  Establish targets and track the equipment performance from the beginning.  Tracking performance doesn’t have to be complicated, it can be done very quickly in a spreadsheet.  Ideally, you would review the numbers on a weekly basis and course correct based on your results.  Here are some examples of useful metrics:

Performance Metric

Calculation What are we trying to measure

Brewery Output

Bbl/hr Is the brewery yield meeting the design yield?

Right First Time

Good Batches/Total Batches

How often do batches have to be adjusted or finished product has to be reworked

Bottling Throughput

Actual case/hr vs Design case/hr

Is the bottling line running at least 85% of its design throughput?

Compliance to Schedule

Case produced/case planned

Are you producing enough to meet orders?

Machine Availability Uptime/Req’d Production Time

Is your equipment available to run when you need it?


The metrics I listed above are basic ones you can implement within a month. Grab your brewmaster, packaging lead and any maintenance support to share these with them.  If you start with these, I know it will reduce any equipment downtime you experience.

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