Lovibond also known as degrees lovibond or abbreviated as L is a scale for measuring color originally introduced by Joseph Lovibond in the 1860's. To determine color the sample is placed in a "Tintometer" which also contains several numbered discs of tinted glass. The Lovibond color is the value assigned to the disc whose color most closely matches the sample. The original Lovibond scale was used to measure gas colors, but has since expanded to measure the colors of oils, chemicals, foods and beverages. For brewing, Lovibond is used primarily to specify grain colors - for example a dark roast malt might be 400 L, while a pale malt might only 2 or 3 L. In this application it is actually the color of a laboratory wort prepared from a sample of the malt under specified conditions whose color is determined. In older books, beer color may also be measured in Lovibond.
Lovibond color is approximately equivalent to the newer Standard Reference Method or SRM. Degrees lovibond and SRM may be used interchangably by homebrewers.