It is late September and the hop harvest in the Pacific Northwest is beginning the final stages. The Oregon crop largely concluded a week ago, while harvest is still ongoing in both Washington and Idaho. The weather the past two weeks has cooled considerably, which has been appreciated by most who have worked diligently in the field and harvest facilities to take in the 2017 crop.
For the most part, quality has been excellent and yields have been average to slightly above average on most varieties. Weather conditions and good growing practices have led to an excellent Centennial crop in most locations. Centennial hops have been somewhat of a challenge in many areas over the past few years, so a good crop is a welcome development.
The Cascade crop is solid with exceptional quality coming out of all regions. The Simcoe® crop was excellent in the Lower Yakima Valley and quality is stellar in all areas. The Citra® crop overall was good while Mosaic® yields were slightly under average in many locations. The Oregon Nugget crop is complete and yields and alpha appear to be hitting five-year averages. Chinook harvest is in progress and yields and quality appear to be excellent.
Late maturing alpha varieties are being harvested in Washington and Idaho and early indications show average to above average yields and alpha readings slightly higher than the five-year average.
We have another week to go, with some growers in Washington expecting to harvest into early October. We’ll have a final report when the entire crop is in the barn and final delivery numbers are available.