New Zealand’s hop growers produced 794 tonnes this year, a seven percent increase on the 2015 crop.
New Zealand Hops chief executive Doug Donelan released the crop results yesterday. “Growing conditions were text book well into harvest. Unfortunately though, a severe weather event driven by a tropical depression mid-season brought with it torrential rain that delivered high volumes of water. When the sun reappeared it brought several days of extreme heat accompanied by plunging overnight temperatures which hastened plant maturity rates requiring growers to step up the pace to bring the remainder of the crop in.”
Harvesting started in mid-February and was completed by early April. Yield and quality are both high this year, with the Wakatu variety in particular enjoying the excellent growing conditions. Nelson Sauvin, though, was particularly hard hit by unfavourable conditions in localised areas.
Hop fun facts
- Nelson Sauvin is our most popular hop, making up 21% of the crop. It’s followed by Motueka, Wakatu, Cascade and Pacifica.
- 24 different varieties were grown this year, excluding trials varieties.
- Organic hops made up 3.1% of the crop. While it’s still a small component, organic production increased by 22% last year.
- There are 18 hop growers in New Zealand, one more than last year. The area under hops grew slightly to 412ha in total.
- Aroma/flavour varieties continue to dominate, making up 355ha of our hop gardens. Alpha-designated varieties made up 57ha, down from 60ha last year.
- The Brooklyn hop has changed its name and now wishes to be known as 06.05-22-02.