In what can only be described as an absolute tragedy, it’s been reported that a warehouse blaze in the US Northwest has claimed 4% of America’s hops harvest.
As of yet, the cause of the fire in Washington’s Yakima Valley is unknown (although the fact it’s happened in Washington’s premier wine region must make some of us suspicious, no?), but local reports note the “pungent” aroma the fire released. Pungent? Again, these ‘reports’ must’ve come from wine types.
The effect on US beer supply, or world beer prices, is likely to be negligible, especially for stout drinkers (many have commented that the cascade hops grown in the region are used more for microbrewery pale ales).
And it surely means that this weekend’s Yakima Fresh Hop Ale Festival is going to see quite a few ‘comfort ales’.