White Vinegar Plants

Know-how and technology licensing.

Vogelbusch White Vinegar Technology

White - or sprit, or alcohol - vinegar is made from diluted neutral alcohol. In the food processing industry, it is widely used as an acidifier and preservative. 

We provide process designs and equipment for vinegar production with capacities starting from 4,000 liters per day.

For key figures for vinegar plant construction
Block diagram

Vogelbusch process for vinegar production from pure alcohol


Acetic acid bacteria convert ethanol into vinegar. After a maturing period, the vinegar is clarified in a fining and filtration process.

Mash preparation

In the injection tank, pure alcohol is diluted with process water to maximum 15 % strength and mixed with raw vinegar containing acetic acid bacteria. Nutrients and some vinegar are blended in the nutrient vessel, then added to the injection tank and mixed to dilute.

This mash preparation is carried out in batches once or twice a week in one of the injection tanks while the other is used as feed tank for the fermentation.

1 vinegar fermenter
Vinegar fermentation

The fermentation is operated semi-continuous. 

The alcoholic mash is aerated in the fermentation tank using our proprietary IP-8 Self-Priming Aeration system. The fermentation cycle is finished when the vinegar concentration reaches its maximum and the alcohol content decreases to around 0.3 %vol,. Then about a third of the fermenter content is pumped into the ejection tank.

The fermenter is refilled with fresh mash from the injection tank for the next fermentation batch. A batch cycle lasts about a day, but is dependent on the alcohol content of the raw material.

1 bremoferm7630

Nutrients are vital for optimal growth of acetic acid bacteria. The combination of nutrients is selected according to the type of raw material used, to improve its nutritive value and thus the yield. 

For white vinegar, glucose and BREMOFERM©, a proprietary formulation developed by Vogelbusch, which is rich in vitamins, minerals and other nutritive substances, are added to the mash.

Contact us for a free of charge sample of BREMOFERM©
Maturing, fining, filtration

The fresh (raw) vinegar discharged from the fermenter is allowed to mature in the ejection tanks for several weeks. In the course of maturing impurities which cause turbidity (such as bacteria, coagulated proteins, precipitated salts) settle to the bottom of the tanks.

If required, the clarifying of the raw vinegar can be advanced with fining agents in specially equipped fining tanks. To remove any remaining solids, the mature vinegar passes through a filter module. Before bottling or bulk filling, it is finally filtered over a de-germination filter and diluted to the desired concentration with process water.

Production capacities
FERMENTER TYPE   V300 V600 V1200 V2400
Volume 18 36 72 144
Production capacity (10 % vinegar) l/d 4,000 8,000 15,000 30,000
Cooling water connection load 24 °C m³/h 20 40 80 160
Average required area 300 400 600 800
Minimum required building height m 7.6 7.7 9.5 10.5
Fully automated fermentation

The fully automated vinegar fermentation of Vogelbusch uses a sensor-equipped measurement system for online detection of alcohol in the fermenting mash.

The alcohol concentration is constantly measured during the fermentation process. As soon as the adjusted residual alcohol content is reached, the raw vinegar is automatically ejected and the fermenter is refilled with fresh mash.

An emergency power supply with automatic start ensures interruption-free fermentation in case of a power failure.


Our services are tailored to your requirements with design and supply packages starting from key components (fermenter along with aerator and the process control system) up to EPC solutions for the complete process line, including measuring & control and laboratory equipment.

Our experts are also available to upgrade or revamp existing plants and to integrate vinegar units into other manufacturing facilities, for instance alcohol production.

1 vinegar coolingcoil
Cooling requirements

Fermentation is an exothermal process and cooling is essential. To conduct away the heat, cooling water with 24 °C at a recycle temperature of 27 °C  is decisive for vinegar production.

Vogelbusch proprietary design includes a finely balanced cooling coil system installed inside the fermenter (image: inner view of a fermenter).

Average consumption figures for white vinegar production

All figures given here are typical and can vary depending on plant configuration and equipment.

Consumption for 10,000 l vinegar (10 %)
Neutral alcohol l 1,075
Ethanol content % 100
Bremoferm (nutrient) kg 5
Glucose kg 10
Power kWh 450
Process water 9
Cooling water 23 / 27 °C 840
Other consumables include filter aids and fining agent, if required.
Our alcohol vinegar showcase projects


All information given here is typical and can vary depending on plant configuration. For particular information please send us a message with your project details.

We offer standard plant sizes starting with a daily capacity of 4,000 liters vinegar calculated with a acetic acid concentration of 10 %.

Capital expenditure always depends on plant capacity and configuration as well as local conditions. Costs for the complete process plant (excluding building, auxiliaries, infrastructure) are from euro 1 million upwards.

This figure is for general reference only since each project has its own particularities that need consideration. 

The final concentration depends on the initial alcohol content of the raw material. Typical product concentrations are between 5 and 14 % acetic acid. For domestic use, the vinegar is diluted to a concentration of 5 %.

Our process calculations always refer to a standard concentration of 10 %.

Our minimum design package includes the supply of the key components, which is the fermenter along with aerator, cooling coil and process control system.

Full service covers the process design and supply of the complete process line, including measuring & control and laboratory equipment.

The dimensions and internals of the Vogelbusch fermenter are designed to conform with our IP-8-Self-Priming Aeration system. As long as the dimensions of an existing fermenter or tank are close to the Vogelbusch fermenter a reconstruction is possible.

Owing to the temperature- and oxygen-sensitive nature of the process it is essential to ensure continuous supply of electricity. An emergency power supply unit is necessary for interruption-free operation of the aeration, the cooling aggregate, the cooling water regulation and pump as well as the feed and discharge automation.

For reproduction vinegar bacteria need a complex blend of vitamins, minerals and other nutritive substances, which are present in fruit wine but not in pure alcohol. White vinegar therefore in particular needs the addition of specific nutrients to promote the growth of the bacteria and thus the yield of the process.

Complete our design questionnaire (check Links & Downloads section below) and send it back to us to get a professional opinion on your project.

Process units

Find out more about the processes used in vinegar production:

Treating of input materials for bioconversion.
Raw Material Preparation
Converting substrates by using micro-organisms.
Separating suspended particles.