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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. Brew Master: The Craft Brewing Renaissance

In 1976, there were two craft breweries in America. Today, that number is closer to 1,600. This phenomenon has been dubbed “The American Craft Brewing Renaissance.”craft-breweries-300x225 The sudden revival in Americans’ taste for well-crafted beer created a sizeable market for brew pubs, micro breweries, and amateur home brewing equipment.
According to brewersassociation.org, 1,595 craft breweries operated for some or all of 2009 – at its highest since Prohibition. The craft brewing market takes about a 4 percent piece of the pie by volume and about 7 percent in dollars. Not bad considering the immensity of the industry. Beer is, after all, the third most consumed beverage in the world after water and tea.
“Craft” beer is not always what it seems. Fans of Blue Moon might be disappointed to learn that it is owned by Molson-Coors Brewing Co. The label tries to hide that. Blue Moon is not alone. Many Craft breweries such as Red Hook have been bought up by Macro breweries. It’s a nasty shelf space war being waged by big brewing business, but it keeps phenomenal craft brewers in the game as rare, but revered artisans.
As for home brewers: They are a strange breed of geeks who have taken the art into their garages and basements. They fabricate their own equipment out of Igloo water coolers and propane turkey fryers. The outcome is nonetheless fantastic. If researched and executed properly, a five gallon batch of home brew can beat anything on tap at an average local pub.
The American Craft Brewing Renaissance has brought new life to the American beer palate. It has taught many to look beyond the strategically stocked liquor store shelves. All it takes to find outstanding hand crafted local beer is a Google search and a willingness to refine your palate. Check out next week’s article to learn about the home brewing process and find out where it’s being brewed on the Fairfield University campus.
10 Mar. 2011

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