The hop harvest is finished in record time!
Week 2 sees Matthew and the Hoppers battling the elements.
Unphased by the torrential rain, they are hopping on the tractor and making nothing of the muddy field.
Trailer-load after trailer-load of Fuggles arrive at the Hangar....
....to be fed into the picking machine.....
....ready to be collected for drying.
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...
Miles keeps a close eye on quality, as this year is definitely about quality not quantity...
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!
Several hop bines drip dry before being dispatched to Yorkshire as wedding decorations!
After the kiln, it's on to the conditioning floor for 24 hours
...before the hops are packed into the plastic bales...
...and vacuum sealed until we are ready to use them in the brew house.
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!
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.
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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