Roy Farms got its start in 1907, when Joseph Roy saw the potential of the Yakima Valley and planted his first hop plant. What was once 10 acres now spans more than 8,000 acres to include a variety of hops, apples, cherries and blueberries — but the backbone has always been hops.
You’ve very likely used some Roy Farms hops before, as they are one of the biggest growers of Citra and Mosaic. “Back when the hop market was commoditized, we had a very beneficial relationship with HAAS moving Roy Farms hops as a commodity into the global space,” president and CEO Mike Roy explains on the HAAS blog. “When the alpha market changed, we began exploring different hops for craft brewers and shifted into direct selling for a number of years.”
Well, those legacy Roy Farms hops are once again available via the HAAS distribution network.
“Back in the Fall of 2021, we entered into an agreement with HAAS to market and distribute the proprietary hops we grow through the ADHA (Association for the Development of Hop Agronomy), hops like Azacca ADHA 483 c.v. and Adeena ADHA 1940 c.v., as well as future ADHA aroma varieties in development,” Mike says. “So we wanted to think about new ways to market our grown product, and becoming a HAAS distribution partner opened up a lot of opportunities.”
For those of you are new to / interested in Roy Farms hops, here’s a bit more from that HAAS interview:
What’s nice is, we don’t have to be the largest hop farm, so we can focus on working to be the best. I think what we do is, bring customers one step closer to the farm. For certain customers, that’s important, to be as close to the farm as possible.
We focus on sustainability throughout the supply chain, from the genetic side through water application to packaging and distribution—sustainability is core to everything we do. In fact, we were the first, but I think one of the only, if not the only, farm to be fully carbon footprinted from cradle to grave, as an example. We’re one of two hop farms that are B Corp certified, and we’re the largest organic producer. To us, that’s really important.
And then, on the flip side, what’s great for folks who were our direct customers, they’re now benefiting from our access to more hops and innovative hops products from HAAS, like INCOGNITO® and LUPOMAX®.
And those innovative products are important to all sized customers, right?
Mike: Yeah, definitely. We talked about the shift from alpha to aroma, and from commodity to new flavors and aromas. I think the next market wave is really going to be more about efficiency than it is newness, and I think HAAS is positioned well to be aligned with that movement. The ethos in craft used to be “more is better” and I think that’s shifting—now, it’s like, “Well, can we do just as much or more with less?” So, yeah, you look for efficiencies everywhere.