The results are in! 2017 Big QC Day recap

At White Labs, we offer year-round analytical testing for all fermented beverages. In 2007, Big QC Day was started to provide a low-cost option for breweries wishing to have multiple analytical tests conducted at once. Since then, it has become a program that allows professional brewers to take advantage of big savings twice a year while also gaining insight into the overall wellness and performance of their beers.

By participating in Big QC Day, you are able to benchmark your submission’s results against averages from the entire group of participants and totals from your beer-style category. This allows you a small glimpse into industry trends and the ability to see how your beers compare against others, specifically based on a sample of breweries that participate. Here are the average results for some of the popular tests from our San Diego Analytical Lab, which reflects data from all 2017 Big QC Day participants:


Average results, based on 2017 participants

Alcohol by Volume (ABV) %


Final Gravity


Calories (kcal/12oz)


pH Value


International Bittering Units (BU)


While these are only some of the commonly requested analysis from our lab, the full list of Big QC Day tests includes:

  • IBU - Measured by a precision spectrophotometer, and the results are reported as BU (Bitterness Units).
  • Alcohol By Volume - Using an Anton Paar Density Meter DMA 5000 and Alcolyzer Beer ME, the results are reported as percent by volume.
  • Alcohol By Weight - Using an Anton Paar Density Meter DMA 5000 and Alcolyzer Beer ME, the results are reported as percent by weight.
  • Specific Gravity - Values will depend on styles. An Anton Paar Alcolyzer and DMA 5000 are used for this test, which provides a high degree of accuracy.
  • Extracts (Real and Apparent) - Amount of sugars left in beer, usually non-fermentable carbohydrates. Results are reported in degrees Plato.
  • Attenuation (Real and Apparent) - Expressed as a percentage of the difference between the original and final gravities.
  • Calories - Reported as calories per 12-ounce serving of beer
  • pH - An important indicator of quality and consistency. A pH probe is used to measure the level of each beer, which typical pH values are 4.2 to 4.6.
  • Color - A spectrophotometer or Anton Paar Beer Alcolyzer is used. Results reported in SRM.
  • Diacetyl - Tested via Gas Chromatograph and results are reported in ppb.
  • Microbiological Testing - Samples are tested for wild yeast, aerobic bacteria, and anaerobic bacteria on a variety of selective media. Results are reported as positive or negative.

Additionally, in 2017, we received a wide range of various beer-style submissions. Below is the breakdown of each submitted category, which also includes the top four styles:

Beer Style*

American IPA

American Pale Ale

Imperial IPA

American Blonde Ale

*When registering samples, participants may select a beer style for their submissions, which includes 52 styles including “other.”

In 2018, you will have two opportunities to take advantage of savings from Big QC Day! As you’re preparing your entries for two noteworthy beer competitions--2018 World Beer Cup and Great American Beer Festival, send us a sample and we’ll run an analysis in our lab. You'll be able to see how your (possible medal-winning) beers performed in Big QC Day by comparing your results against the entire pool of participants. Dates for 2018 are:

  • Get your samples to White Labs by Tuesday, May 15, 2018; We’ll get your results completed by June 5.
  • Get your samples to White Labs by Monday, August 20, 2018; We’ll get your results completed by September 10.

The cost for testing two samples is $139 or $199 for two samples with gluten testing as an add-on. To purchase Big QC Day test kits, visit, or contact our Customer Service Representatives at 888.593.2785 or email [email protected]. Note: While you may purchase the Big QC Day Test Kits at any time, samples will not be processed in our lab until the submission deadlines listed above. For more information, visit

Don't worry about what’s happening with your beer. Get it tested.


Add New Comment
Comments 0

Add new comment

Be the first to leave a comment!