Hops (Humulus lupulus L.) play a crucial role in the beer making process. Within the female flowers, known as “cones,” there are lupulin glands containing alpha acids, beta acids, and essential oils, which provide bittering and unique aroma flavors to beer. Recent growth in the craft beer industry, a growing demand for locally sourced ingredients, and declining commodity crop prices, has created in increased interest in local hop production.At present, the majority of hop production is in Washington, Oregon and Idaho. In the past 5 years, United States hop production has increased 72 percent, spreading growth to other states including New York and Michigan. As of June 2017, Nebraska has 39 strung acres of hops under production, which increased 15 acres since 2016; the United States, as of the 2017 hop harvest, has a total of 55,786 acres of hops under production. Total U.S. hop production increased from 88.6 million pounds to 106.2 million pounds between 2016 and 2017. Non-traditional growing regions’ hop production increased 25%. While the industry is small in Nebraska, it is growing rapidly. Efforts through University of Nebraska personnel in research and extension provide timely information to create successful farms and businesses in the state.
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A freshly picked hop, split in two. (Photo courtesy Katie Kreuser)
Growing Hops In Nebraska
by Brandon McDermott | NET News
About 98 percent of the total amount of hops grown in the U.S. happens in the Pacific Northwest. Research at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln is hoping to change that. A new study is looking at eight specific varieties of hops and attempting to grow them in Nebraska. Brandon McDermott interviews Stacy Adams, associate professor of practice in agronomy and horticulture and Katie Kreuser works directly with growers and brewers in Nebraska. Full story at http://bit.ly/2BLo6tV.
Aerial view of hops growing on the University of Nebraska–Lincoln's East Campus. Photo by Craig Chandler | University Communication
Nebraska research assists state’s craft brewing industry
From field and lab to brew kettle and marketplace, research from the University of Nebraska–Lincoln is helping further the Cornhusker State’s burgeoning craft brewing industry.
In the field, Nebraska’s Stacy Adams is leading the charge, guiding a multi-year study to see if hops can be grown locally and if the resulting pinecone-like blooms are viable as a niche revenue crop for producers. The work is funded through a grant from the Nebraska Department of Agriculture. Full story at https://go.unl.edu/kw5p.
Hops Extension Resources
Stacy A. Adams. 2018. Hops on a Quarter-Acre. University of Nebraska Extension, EC3026. (PDF file)
Katherine E. Kreuser and Kyle C. Broderick. 2017. Hop Downy Mildew. University of Nebraska Extension, NebGuide G2297. (PDF file)
David P. Lambe and Adams, Stacy A. 2016. Estimated Costs of Producing Hops in Nebraska. University of Nebraska Extension, EC3010. (PDF file)
Nebraska Registered Fungicides for Hops (PDF file)