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4-2017

Global hop market

A local alternative to mass beer suggested by independent brewers has been successful and is now altering the global market. Beer is becoming more diversified, so transnational companies have to accept the new game rules and to switch focus to young and fast growing markets. All these processes increased the demand for aroma and bitter hop as well as their acreage expansion on two continents. However now there appeared a downward trend of alcohol consumption in the world, so even special sorts can soon turn to be sufficient. In this connection the dynamic American hop market is already facing some problems. EU hop producers have become more cautious, they are not racing to exceed the demand and look forward with more confidence, judging by the contract terms. 

Hop Market in Russia

Germany still dominates the Russian market, yet over the recent two years one has been able observe a continuous success of Czech hop suppliers. Their expansion and growing popularity of hops from the United States became the drivers of supplies growth in 2016 despite the preceding modest harvest crop in the EU, as well as the factor of relative stability in 2017. In this connection, in 2017, the ratio of the varieties continued to shift towards the aroma ones, and the supplies of Magnum hop and other alpha varieties were reduced. However, the import of bitter hop pellets is partially replaced by extracts, especially from the major beer manufacturers. Total volumes of alpha acid supplies, according to our estimation, decreased by approximately 5% and returned to the level of 2015. Barth Haas Group continues dominating the hop products market; HVG also increased its weight. At the same time, Morris Hanbury significantly reduced the supplies in 2017.

US. Surly brews up plan for $20 million expansion

Already known for making audacious beers, Surly Brewing Co. unveiled bold plans Monday for a $20 million facility that would house a restaurant and beer garden and could make it the biggest brewer in the state.
Before it can break ground or even pick a location, though, the Brooklyn Center-based beermaker will need a change in Minnesota liquor law. Prospects for that might be as murky as Surly's notoriously heavy Darkness beer.
"People want our beer, and we simply just want to improve the ways we give it to them," said Omar Ansari, who founded the brewery in his dad's old metal-scrap warehouse in 2006 and has expanded his operations several times since.
Last year alone saw a 32 percent increase in sales, to 12,000 barrels (about 3 million pints), Surly says. The new facility would have an annual capacity of as much as 100,000 barrels, a little more than either Summit and Schell Brewing. With that kind of growth, Ansari is confident that raising the $20 million won't be a problem.
The legislative issue is the linchpin. Only small-scale Minnesota breweries are allowed to sell beer for on-site consumption. Ansari has hired the lobbying firm Cook Girard Associates to work on his behalf in what could be a tough fight. Just ask Jamie Pfuhl, president of the Minnesota Grocers Association, which is now in its third decade of trying to change state laws to allow grocery stores to sell regular beer and wine.
Pfuhl noted that legislators "certainly have full plates," but said the jobs that would be created by Surly's expansion -- plus the lure of "beer tourism" seen in such states as Oregon and Colorado -- might help Surly's case. "Right now, no revenue stone should go unturned," she said.

8 Feb. 2011

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