Smart brewery: Tradition brews with innovation

Courtney Muraczewski
04/22/2020 in Case Studies

One of the oldest breweries in the world, the Hofstetten Brewery in Austria has been brewing beer since 1449 and operating on Loxone technology since 2015. Today, over 700,000 liters of beer are produced annually with the help of some automation.

Smooth operation all-around

In September of 2016, Hofstetten Brewery opened its doors to a whole new brewing environment. Every automated task in the brewery starts with the Miniserver. As the “brain” behind automation, the Miniserver knows how the brewery should operate in terms of temperature regulation for the hops, system oversight for malfunction, lighting moods for guided tours and much more.

Overview of smart functionality in the brewery:

Lighting for any occasion

LED lighting control has played a role in providing optimal task lighting for everyday duties and dramatic lighting for special events. 

During guided brewery tours, an NFC Key Fob ensures that the lighting switches quickly to “Tour Mode” for a special flair. Even the exterior lighting creates a special effect for guests.

Presence-controlled lighting, starting with Motion Sensors,  achieves the highest savings potential when the brewmasters are honing their craft.

Temperature & quality assurance

For any type of beer and hops, temperature plays a key role in the brewing process. Therefore, temperature control must be as precise and reliable as possible. A task well-suited for Loxone technology.

For example, the barley silo will always rest at a constant 50ºF while the beer tanks remain at a cooler 36.5ºF. 

If the temperature ever fluctuates unexpectedly, a push notification will be sent to the brewmaster.

Protection for the grains & employees

During any chance of abnormal temperature change, a push notification will be sent out to inform the management team and the brewmasters. They can choose whether to disarm the alarm or take further steps for protection. Just one example of smart security.

This is especially important for employees‘ safety as it is for the grains. In case of an emergency, such as a fire, an alarm will go off throughout the building.

No wasted energy

During the brewing process, steam is generated which then condenses into hot water. This water is then used to regulate the temperature, when heating efforts are needed, in the brewery areas. For example, during winter, the delivery platform can be kept ice-free without relying on additional energy from a heating system.

Control grain levels

The Hofstetten Brewery also produces the ingredients for its traditional beer itself, which are stored in large silos. Before using Loxone, the brewery used to shovel its own grains. Now, a conveyor chain controlled by Loxone takes over this task. If the grain screw is too full, it stops automatically. Fixed, defined follow-up times prevent barley from remaining on the conveyor belts.

Control of power guzzlers

In the smart brewery, the Miniserver always monitors the current power consumption.

In case of power peaks, consumers such as refrigerators, barrel filling or air blowers are switched off for a short time to prevent overloads.

Additional energy savings

Lighting moods are not only beautiful, but also helpful in saving energy costs. The greatest benefit is seen from the fact that lighting is presence-controlled. So as long as there are employees in the brewery or guests on the premises, the lighting corresponding to each area will know to remain activated until presence is no longer detected, or if someone triple-taps a Touch switch.

Always informed in the Loxone App

Every brewer at Hofstetten is equipped with the Loxone App in their smartphone. This means all information regarding temperature curves, lighting and more can be checked at any time and on-the-go. Quick action can be taken in the event of a possible malfunction. Beer is saved, and so are the employees.

Completely expandable & flexible

The best part about Loxone is how flexible it is. We still have many plans that we want to realize in the next years. Loxone helps us prepare for the future. For example, to realize an intelligent sewage treatment plant to control the amount of waste water precisely, or for a PV system to produces the most electricity at the exact time when our brewery is in full operation.

Peter Krammer

Brewmaster, Hofstetten Brewery

Another bonus: Smart Beer!

Hofstetten Brewery makes beer specially for Loxone.

It’s always in stock at our Loxone Basecamp in Kollerschlag, Austria!

– Special Tip –

More possibilities for business…


No matter the type or size of business, true automation by Loxone is possible to help it run more efficiently. Explore the possibilities for your own business or commercial project:

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