The European Union recently opened the door to additional applications for Velcorin in the wine industry. As a result, this LANXESS technology can now be deployed at all stages of wine production and for all wines. Velcorin (Dimethyldicarbonate, DMDC) can be used to optimize existing processes such as filtration or the addition of sulfites, and also as a replacement for hot filling and preservation with sorbates. Matthias Bracke, Senior Product Manager of the Beverage Technology business line in LANXESS’ Material Protection Products business unit, commented: "Stabilizing wine with Velcorin has no negative influence whatsoever on the taste, odor or color. For this reason, Velcorin technology is the first choice for many oenologists and winemakers: It does not alter the character of the wine in the slightest, it simply helps to stabilize it."
Velcorin has successfully been tested for many years outside the EU as an oenological process in a wide range of applications in the new world wine-growing countries. In Europe, however, there were restrictions on the use of the technology for dry wines (below 5 g residual sugar per liter). Now, the EU has followed the recommendation of the International Organization of Vine and Wine (OIV) to allow the use of Velcorin in the production of dry wines.
In wine production, Velcorin protects the wine from microbiological attack through undesired microorganisms, and thus protects it from spoilage. Especially with high-quality wines, which are stored in barrique barrels for many months and even years, there is a large risk of attack by Brettanomyces, a genus of yeast that gets into the wine and frequently only becomes noticeable in the taste after several months. Velcorin in particular is highly effective against such yeasts and is widely used with very good results in the United States. Even at low dosages, the product can ensure that the treated wines retain their high quality, while saving time and costs compared to alternative processes.
LANXESS has been successfully marketing Velcorin for the beverage industry for several years. The specialty product is used both for non-alcoholic soft drinks and for wine to enable producers to comply with the stringent demands on microbiological safety. After addition to the beverage, DMDC rapidly breaks down into tiny quantities of methanol and carbon dioxide, which are, anyway, natural components of many drinks. For this reason, neither the taste, odor nor color of the beverage is influenced.
Velcorin (velcorin.com) is highly effective, neutral to the taste, cost-efficient and beverages stabilized herewith are compatible with all known forms of secondary packaging such as PET and glass bottles, cans, cartons and BiBs (bags-in-box). Its range of use extends from wines and fruit juice beverages to iced tea and isotonic sports drinks. Velcorin is also used in non-carbonated and carbonated flavored water.
LANXESS (lanxess.com) is a leading specialty chemicals company with sales of EUR 8.8 billion in 2011 and currently around 16,800 employees in 30 countries. The company is at present represented at 49 production sites worldwide. The core business of LANXESS is the development, manufacturing and marketing of plastics, rubber, intermediates and specialty chemicals. LANXESS is a member of the leading sustainable indices Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) World and FTSE4Good.