More hops farming happenings are coming out of New York. This time, local growers and business owners are pushing federal law makers to pass legislation that would plant the business seed for the budding local hops market. Small, local hop farming stories have been trending recently — with stories coming from Cleveland, North Carolina and, of course, New York.
The Poughkeepsie Journal is reporting that farmers and business owners in the Hudson Valley are calling for the support of the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Small Business Administration to fund a cooperative of Hudson valley farmers and craft breweries that will produce locally-grown hops. From the Journal:
“The Hudson Valley is well-positioned to lead the resurgence of the New York hops industry,” said [U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer, D-New York]. “Many of the craft brews will reap the benefit of local hops farms and the proximity to New York City offers an opportunity for local tourism.”
He said New York is one of the few states without a local source of hops, even though there are 75 microbreweries in the state. Dutchess, Ulster and Orange counties each have two breweries, according to the State Liquor Authority.
We all know that hop farming is expensive, so how much are farmers calling for? The nonprofit coalition Hudson Valley Hops asked for $100,000 to purchase equipment and hammer mills. The Journal reports that the members of the coop will share the costs of growing and distributing the product.
As craft breweries have grown under the “small, local” mantra, so to go the industries that support the final product. Barley growers and malters have also expressed interest in small, local operations. Craft Brewing Business will continue to follow this growing trend. For now, head over to The Poughkeepsie Journal for the full story.