Friday, July 4, 2014

Bring hops home to New England - Isinglass River Hops Exchange

I just learned of a very cool kick-starter project. The Isinglass River Hops Exchange is hoping to fund their goal of "bringing hops back to New England", or essentially keeping the hops here if they were grown on New England farms. They are crowd sourcing $30,000 for the company. You can see on their campaign page at the above link and how they plan to allocate the funds at start up.

I am totally impressed by this idea and, to be perfectly honest, jealous that we didn't come up with it first!

In a podcast interview on their campaign page, you hear the argument for why this could be huge, not just for homebrewing, but for the New England economy. A hop processing company for the local farmers who grow hops not only means more agricultural growth, but jobs within the processing, pelletizing, and packaging of the hops for distribution.

A big piece of this project is purchasing the machine built to turn the hops into pellets. This means taking the robust green cones on your hop plants and turning them into these...

Pelletizing can help with efficiency, consistency, and cleanliness. This would be the only hops exchange in New England once up and running.

I think the most compelling argument for why this needs to happen is that many hops from New England farms actually get sent out of the region to be ground down and pelletized only to be sent back to New England breweries and homebrewers.  They get sent as far away as the Northwest. That's just crazy.

Check out their campaign page for more information. I know I will be following along!


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