But to answer the question you posed. K-sorbate inhibits yeast from budding. Doesn't kill them and doesn't prevent fermentation in any literal way but what it does is prevent yeast cells from reproducing. That means that when yeast cell die there are none to replace them and I think that the chronological lifespan of a yeast cell once brought back into animated life is about 6 days... At least that is my understanding of what K-sorbate does, though if you have ever tried to ferment say, apple juice that has been preserved with sorbates, you will know that it is as close to impossible as possible to get the yeast to overcome the sorbates.
That said "pasteurizing" fruit (AKA cooking it) makes fruit taste like jam.. but you can always add k-meta (AKA Campden tablets) dissolved in water 24 hours before you add any fruit to a fermentation. K-meta produces SO2 and sulfur dioxide will kill wild yeast and other microbes (LAB, for example) on the surface (and insides) of fruit. The 24 hours is needed to allow the SO2 to evaporate off. This is a standard procedure used by wine makers.
Yeah, but the inexpense is one thing. My concern is two -fold - 1) the yeast at this stage cannot in fact take up any nutrient (sorry cannot find the reference but I think it is in the Scottslab handbook) and 2) if they cannot then that nutrient is going to flavor the mead AND is going to be a treasure chest for any lurking microbes.
Got it- canned it is! Best deal seems to be through MR beer. Yup will make it work: mini blender will just take a bit longer to prep. no potassium sorbate - when I researched more it's mostly used in winemaking?
You're not the boss of me, @Brewer, I do what I want. Seriously though, I did it in the melomel because I'd like it if the yeast could ferment some of the sugars from the fruit. In the one I'm going to hop, I did it out of habit, suppose it wasn't strictly necessary. Good thing Fermaid is cheap.