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Hop Harvest Finale

Hop Harvest Finale

The hop harvest is finished in record time! 

 Week 2 sees Matthew and the Hoppers battling the elements.

Hop with rain dropUnphased by the torrential rain, they are hopping on the tractor and making nothing of the muddy field. 

Tractor in the rain
Trailer-load after trailer-load of Fuggles arrive at the Hangar....
Fuggles be fed into the picking machine.....
hop picking machine
....ready to be collected for drying.
Picking out the hops
The harvest may not be as abundant as last year, but check out the size of this Fuggles hop!
The Hoppers spread a sea of fresh, green hops in the kiln...
hops in the kiln
Miles keeps a close eye on quality, as this year is definitely about quality not quantity...
Miles checking the hops
Matthew's ingenious hoist to lift the hops out of the kiln onto the conditioning floor certainly saves time and effort, and is now a one-man job!
New hoist
Several hop bines drip dry before being dispatched to Yorkshire as wedding decorations!
Whole bines drying out
But don't worry, we've saved plenty of bines so you can decorate your hat at our Hop Harvest Festival and TEA Party
hop bines in the hop field
After the kiln, it's on to the conditioning floor for 24 hours
hops on the conditioning floor
...before the hops are packed into the plastic bales...
Hops being loaded into the packer
...and vacuum sealed until we are ready to use them in the brew house.
Hops vacuum packed
Week 3 dawns bright and clear with only the English Cascade left to pick.  With one final push from all the Hoppers, the harvest is complete!
Empty hop garden
That's an astonishing 8 1/2 acres in only two and a half weeks. All the hops have been picked, dried and packed, ready to be brewed into our famous beers. 
Hoppers 2022
It goes without saying that we couldn't have done this without the help of our volunteer Hoppers, staff and of course, our main man, Matthew.  Well done to them all!
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