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Slow to no primary fermentation


I pitched my yeast into my cider on Aug 13th, the OG was 1.060, and today on Aug 19th it’s still the same. Shouldn’t it have decreased by now?

The cider was unpasteurized but had been sterilized with campden tablets. I used a wyeast and it proofed well. The cider still smells fine (does not smell like vinegar either), and it shows no signs of mould. Now I don’t know what to do, or what’s going on in the cider.

Has anyone experienced this before? Do you have any suggestions?

Should I add yeast nutrient? If so, should I stir it when I add it? Any other tips?

Thanks in advance

It is possible you injured your yeast from the Campden. And maybe you did not pitch enough yeast. How much Campden did you use? How big is your batch of cider? How long after using Campden did you pitch your yeast in?

Thanks for your reply Dave.

I don’t remember exactly how many campden tablets I use ( I wrote it down but don’t have that info on me). I do, however, remember that I used the mid to upper range of what was suggested on the package (1-2 tablets per gallon). The batch is 3 gallons. I let the cider sit for about 30 hours after the tablets before I pitched the yeast. I used the wyeast for cider which is suppose to be enough for 6 gallons.

Do you think I should add more yeast?


which wyeast strain did you use? I am thinking it could be a pH issue. I have heard of some having good results for mead and cider with one of the trappist ale yeasts, but yeast doesn’t really matter that much w/ cider, so many just use a champagne yeast which tolerates low pH.

Sounds like you did everything right. If fermentation is still stalled, then yeah, pitch more yeast. Maybe try the dry Cote des Blancs yeast that always works very well for me.

Thanks again Dave and Pietro,

I used Wyeast: 4766 for cider.

Dave, do you think the batch can be saved with pitching more yeast? yeast nutrient?


Nutrient is pretty worthless IMHO. More active yeast, now that is a great idea.

Is there a chance the cider contained potassium sorbate? Did you press the cider yourself?

I pressed the cider myself.

There is a chance, however, that the stockpot i’m using for primary fermentation is aluminum. I thought it was stainless steel, but now i’m not so sure. Could that be the problem?


You know, I’m not an expert so take this at face value. Wine yeasts are very tolerant of sulfites, but when you start using other yeasts, my experience is that all bets are off. I’ve had some really horrendous experiences with Nottingham and Campden. I mean, ghastly results. If it were my cider, I would probably make a roaring starter, and add a cup of the unfermented cider to it to get the yeast acclimated to the must. If that takes, pitch the whole starter. The sulfites should be well dispersed by now. Just my two cents…

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