We’ve got to admit, that headline has flashes of something out of The Onion, but Oregon legislator Mark Johnson is serious about paying tribute to the microorganism (microbe) that plays such a large role in Oregon’s booming craft beer industry. Saccharomyces cerevisiae has been instrumental in converting sugars to alcohol and growing Oregon’s economy through delicious craft beer.
Southern California Public Radio (SCPR) reported that the idea came from a homebrewer who suggested the official microbe be solidified in Oregon’s state culture next to the state’s official nut and state fruit. From SCPR:
But it turns out that Johnson has done his homework on Saccharomyces cerevisiae and its role in the Beaver State’s enviable lifestyle.
“I’m an IPA guy,” he proclaims. “The more hops I can have in a beer, the better.”
He’s in luck there. Johnson’s district is home to Full Sail, makers of some nice, hoppy brews, as well as four or five smaller breweries started by former employees.
The vote to honor the microbe passed the House Rules Committee last week and is headed for a full vote in the Oregon House of Representatives. The first official state yeast is only a few votes away from the history books.