For the first time in brewing history, Yakima Chief Hops (YCH), a grower owned hop supplier, has made fresh hop ales possible for the global craft beer industry with the launch of their cutting edge Frozen Fresh Hops program.
Fresh hop ales are one of the most celebratory beers in American craft beer. Brewed with whole wet cones within 36 hours of harvest, they represent hops in their most natural form. Dependent upon the unpredictable nature of farming, brewers plan their operations around these seasonal beers. With the high perishability of an unprocessed ingredient, fresh hops are difficult to access for brewers further from the farms.
With the growing popularity of fresh hop ales, the need to create a more flexible and sustainable product increased. Focused on innovation and creative solutions, YCH developed a way to offer Frozen Fresh Hops in partnership with Wyckoff Farms, skilled in the art producing and preserving quality, frozen agricultural products.
YCH’s Frozen Fresh Hops are raw, un-kilned, flash frozen whole cone hops produced in a state-of-the-art BRC-certified food processing facility. Unlike traditional freezing, flash freezing retains the delicate nuances of un-kilned hops by protecting lupulin gland integrity, preserving fresh hops from both a physical and aromatic perspective. The result is a product that delivers the magic of fresh hop season with better storability and logistical flexibility.
Frozen Fresh Hops have sub-freezing shipping and storage requirements. Brewers still have the option to participate in local Farm Pick-Up for traditional fresh hops. Inspired by Wyckoff’s fresh frozen blueberries exported across the globe, YCH now supplies a more accessible fresh hop product, bringing this celebration to beer drinkers everywhere.