Brewmasters ensure brewing quality of current products and create mixtures for the development of new products. For current products, they oversee the whole brewing process following one of many brewing processes. For new products, they develop new brewing formulas and processing techniques or modify existing ones as to come up with potential new products.

Other titles

The following job titles also refer to brewmaster:

brewing manager
brewery manager
beer production manager
master brewer

Minimum qualifications

Bachelor’s degree is generally required to work as brewmaster. However, this requirement may differ in some countries.

ISCO skill level

ISCO skill level is defined as a function of the complexity and range of tasks and duties to be performed in an occupation. It is measured on a scale from 1 to 4, with 1 the lowest level and 4 the highest, by considering:

  • the nature of the work performed in an occupation in relation to the characteristic tasks and duties
  • the level of formal education required for competent performance of the tasks and duties involved and
  • the amount of informal on-the-job training and/or previous experience in a related occupation required for competent performance of these tasks and duties.

Brewmaster is a Skill level 4 occupation.

Brewmaster career path

Similar occupations

These occupations, although different, require a lot of knowledge and skills similar to brewmaster.

cider master
food production manager
food and beverage packaging technologist
botanicals specialist

Long term prospects

These occupations require some skills and knowledge of brewmaster. They also require other skills and knowledge, but at a higher ISCO skill level, meaning these occupations are accessible from a position of brewmaster with a significant experience and/or extensive training.

Essential knowledge and skills

Essential knowledge

This knowledge should be acquired through learning to fulfill the role of brewmaster.

Types of barley: The different types of barley; their characteristics, and quality.
Enzymatic processing: Enzymatic processes used in food production as well as in other industrial biotechnological processes.
Grain-for-beverages milling process: Milling process, which combines advanced and conventional wet and dry milling. Milling methods of grain for beverages ensure good husk conservation and optimal grinding of the endosperm, which provide numerous advantages for the brewing process and final products.
Wort boiling process: Process of wort boiling where the brewer adds hops to the wort and boils the mixture in a wort copper. The bitter compounds of the wort give the beer a longer shelf-life.
Biotechnology: The technology that uses, modifies or harnesses biological systems, organisms and cellular components to develop new technologies and products for specific uses.
Yeast fermentation principles: Understand the principles of yeast fermentation in fermented beverages such as wine or beer.
Financial capability: Financial operations such as calculations, cost estimations, budget management taking relevant commercial and statistical data into account such as data for materials, supplies and manpower.
Beer downstream processing: The process of beer post-fermentation, including maturation and filtration.
Mashing process: Managing the mashing process and understanding its influence on wort quality and character of the finished fermented beverage.
Modern brewing systems: The most updated systems and best available techniques in the brewing industry.
Lautering process: Process of lautering, where the mash is separated into clear, liquid wort and residual grain. Lautering usually takes three steps: mashout, recirculation and sparging.
Quality assurance methodologies: Quality assurance principles, standard requirements, and the set of processes and activities used for measuring, controlling and ensuring the quality of products and processes.
Fermentation processes of beverages: Fermentation processes related to the conversion of sugar to alcohol, gases and acids. 
Brewhouse processes: The processes and techniques through which raw materials are converted into fermentable substrate for beer manufacturing.
Food and beverage industry: The respective industry and the processes involved in the food and beverage industry, such as raw material selection, processing, packaging, and storage.
Wort fining process: Transfer of the wort from the wort copper to the whirlpool to clean the wort of undissolved hops and protein flocks and ready it for cooling.
Ingredients for beer production: Basic ingredients of beer, which consist of water, a starch source such as malted barley, brewer’s yeast to produce the fermentation and a flavouring such as hops.

Essential skills and competences

These skills are necessary for the role of brewmaster.

Design beer recipes: Be creative in composing, testing and producing new beer recipes according to specifications and existing recipes.
Measure density of liquids: Measuring the density of liquids, including oils, using instruments such as hygrometers, or oscillating tubes.
Ensure sanitation: Keep workspaces and equipment free from dirt, infection, and disease by removing waste, trash and providing for appropriate cleaning.
Work in an organised manner: Stay focused on the project at hand, at any time. Organise, manage time, plan, schedule and meet deadlines.
Manage budgets: Plan, monitor and report on the budget.
Manage food manufacturing laboratory: Manage laboratory activities in the plant or factory and using the data to monitor the quality of manufactured products.
Manage staff: Manage employees and subordinates, working in a team or individually, to maximise their performance and contribution. Schedule their work and activities, give instructions, motivate and direct the workers to meet the company objectives. Monitor and measure how an employee undertakes their responsibilities and how well these activities are executed. Identify areas for improvement and make suggestions to achieve this. Lead a group of people to help them achieve goals and maintain an effective working relationship among staff.
Develop standard operating procedures in the food chain: Develop Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) in the food chain based on the production feedback. Understand current operating procedures and identify best techniques. Develop new procedures and update existing ones.
Clean food and beverage machinery: Clean machinery used for food or beverage production processes. Prepare the appropriate solutions for cleaning. Prepare all parts and assure that they are clean enough to avoid deviation or errors in the production process.
Apply haccp: Apply regulations regarding manufacture of food and food safety compliance. Employ food safety procedures based on Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points (HACCP).
Ensure quality of final product: Ensure that finished products meet or exceed company specifications.
Advise on beer production: Advise beer companies, small brewers and managers within the beer industry to improve the quality of the product or of the production process.
Maintain updated professional knowledge: Regularly attend educational workshops, read professional publications, actively participate in professional societies.
Develop beverage manufacturing procedures: Outline the work routines, procedures, and activities required to be performed for the manufacturing of beverage aiming at reaching the production objectives.
Apply requirements concerning manufacturing of food and beverages: Apply and follow national, international, and internal requirements quoted in standards, regulations and other specifications related with manufacturing of food and beverages.
Apply gmp: Apply regulations regarding manufacture of food and food safety compliance. Employ food safety procedures based on Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP).
Set production facilities standards: Ensure a high standard of safety and quality in facilities, systems, and workers’ behaviour. Ensure adherence to procedures and audit standards. Ensure that machinery and appliances in the production plant are appropriate for their task.
Train employees: Lead and guide employees through a process in which they are taught the necessary skills for the perspective job. Organise activities aimed at introducing the work and systems or improving the performance of individuals and groups in organisational settings.
Create new concepts: Come up with new concepts.
Exert quality control to processing food: Ensure the quality of all factors involved in a food production process.
Monitor fermentation: Supervise and control fermentation. Monitor the settling of juice and the fermentation of raw material. Control the progress of the fermentation process to meet specifications. Measure, test and interpret fermentation process and quality data according to specification.
Operate pneumatic conveyor chutes: Use air-conveyor chutes to transfer products or mixtures from containers to storage tanks.
Manage time in food processing operations: Assure a correct management of time and resources using appropriate planning methods.

Optional knowledge and skills

Optional knowledge

This knowledge is sometimes, but not always, required for the role of brewmaster. However, mastering this knowledge allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

Malting process: The malting process consists of soaking cereal grains, usually barley, and then halting further germination by kilning.
Ingredient threats: Ingredients  and potential risks which could damage humans, the flora and the fauna. Functions in ingredient formulas.

Optional skills and competences

These skills and competences are sometimes, but not always, required for the role of brewmaster. However, mastering these skills and competences allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

Impart training on general quality management supervision: Provide training to production employees, in groups or individually, on standard operating procedures, product specifications, visual quality inspection criteria, production controls, formulas and food safety procedures.
Monitor the process of wine production: Based on a large understanding and experience in the production of wine; he/she has the ability to oversee the whole process. This helicopter vision allows him/her to take decisions, and to lead employees to work towards the achievement of an excellent wine.
Maintain relationship with customers: Build a lasting and meaningful relationship with customers in order to ensure satisfaction and fidelity by providing accurate and friendly advice and support, by delivering quality products and services and by supplying after-sales information and service.
Ensure continuous preparedness for audits: Ensure constant compliance with standards and requirements, such as keeping certifications up to date and monitoring activities to ensure correct procedures are followed, so that audits can occur smoothly and no negative aspects can be identified.
Manage corrective actions: Implementing corrective action and continuous improvement plans from internal and third party audits to meet food safety and quality performance indicators with adherance to agreed timescales.
Keep inventory of goods in production: Keep inventory of goods whether they are goods in the front end (i.e. raw materials), intermediate, or back end (i.e. finished products). Count goods and store them for the following production and distribution activities.
Manage delivery of raw materials: Manage reception of raw materials. Receive raw materials from the suppliers. Check for quality and accuracy and move into the warehouse. Make sure that raw materials are adequately stored until they are required by the production department.
Detect microorganisms: Use various laboratory methods and tools such as gene amplification and sequencing to detect and identify microorganisms such as bacteria and fungi in soil, air, and water samples.
Ensure cost efficiency in food manufacturing: Ensure that the whole process of food manufacturing from receipt of raw materials, production, to food manufacturing and packaging processes is cost-effective and efficient.
Handle chemicals for clean in place: Manage suitable quantities and types of cleaning chemicals (CIP) needed in the process of food and beverage production.
Negotiate terms with suppliers: Identify and work with suppliers to ensure quality of supply and best price has been negotiated.
Show confidence: Demonstrate degrees of maturity by fully understanding one’s own qualities and abilities which can serve as sources of confidence in different situations.
Apply foreign language for international trade: Communicate in foreign languages to facilitate international trade operations such as the importation of food and beverages.
Describe the flavour of different beers: Describe the taste and aroma, or flavour of different beers using the adequate lingo and relying on experience to classify beers.
Assist in the development of standard operating procedures in the food chain: Assist in the development of Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) in the food chain by working with line operators. Understand current operating procedures and identify best techniques. Help document new procedures and update existing ones.
Hire new personnel: Hire new personnel for a company or organisation payroll via a prepared set of procedures. Make staffing decisions and direct selection co-workers.
Negotiate improvement with suppliers: Build a good relation with suppliers in order to improve knowledge and quality of supply.
Liaise with colleagues: Liaise with fellow colleagues to ensure common understanding on work related affairs and agree on the necessary compromises the parties might need to face. Negotiate compromises between parties as to ensure that work in general run efficiently towards the achievement of the objectives.
Assess cereal quality for brewing: Assessing barley variety, germination potential, moisture content, nitrogen content, and screening for grain size.
Manage environmental management system: Develop and implement an environmental management system.
Monitor roasting: Monitor the roasting of coffee beans and grains for proper degree of roasting to produce the desired flavours and colours.
Identify market niches: Analyse the composition of the markets, segment these into groups, and highlight the opportunities that each one of these niches represent in terms of new products.
Age alcoholic beverages in vats: Follow adequate procedures to place certain alcoholic beverages (e.g. wine, spirits, vermouth) in vats and age them for the required period. Use techniques to give them special characteristics.
Monitor centrifugal separators: Operating and monitoring centrifugal separators.
Have computer literacy: Utilise computers, IT equipment and modern day technology in an efficient way.
Measure the strength of distillation: Measuring the alcohol concentration based on the information in the spirit safe and maintaining the distillation process and the distillation strength within the parameters asked by regulations for taxation purposes.
Control of expenses: Monitoring and maintaining effective cost controls, in regards to efficiencies, waste, overtime and staffing. Assessing excesses and strives for efficiency and productivity.
Perform services in a flexible manner: Adapt service approach when circumstances change.
Identify the factors causing changes in food during storage: recognize the most relevant factors (chemical, physical, environmental etc) that can alter the food during its storage
Apply control process statistical methods: Apply statistical methods from Design of Experiments (DOE) and Statistical Process Control (SPC) in order to control manufacturing processes.
Liaise with managers: Liaise with managers of other departments ensuring effective service and communication, i.e. sales, planning, purchasing, trading, distribution and technical.
Analyse production processes for improvement: Analyse production processes leading toward improvement. Analyse in order to reduce production losses and overall manufacturing costs.
Ensure compliance with environmental legislation in food production: Make sure to comply with environmental legislation in food production. Understand the legislation related to environmental matters in food manufacturing and apply it in practice.
Interpret data in food manufacturing: Interpret data from different sources, like market data, scientific papers, and customers requirements in order to research development and innovation in food sector.

ISCO group and title

2145 – Chemical engineers





  1. Brewmaster – ESCO
Last updated on August 8, 2022

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