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I am making cider for the first time. I purchased a gallon of organic apple juice with no other ingredients besides the apples. I sort of saw it as a two-for-one, I got the apple juice I needed as well as the vessel I needed.

I sanitized all my equipment, but just left the juice in the carboy (besides the cup or so that I took out to heat up and add yeast to). Should I have poured the juice into another (sanitized) vessel, sanitized the carboy, and then poured it back in the carboy? Or was what I did fine?

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Unless you were planning on heating the juice itself to a high enough temperature to kill anything in it, it's not really going to matter. Any bacteria or wild yeasts present on the inside of the carboy will also be in the juice itself already.

If the juice is labeled as having been pasteurized, then it and its container are probably reasonably sanitary already. If not, heating the juice would be necessary if you don't want foreign microbes present.

  • It would be nice to note that wild microbes found on fruit can often give pleasant result, whilst the ones found in common household are best suited for things like pickled cucumbers (sour stuff). – Mołot Sep 21 '15 at 13:37

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