This week, the Brewers Association announced the recipients of its 2018 Research and Service Grants Program. The 17 grants, totaling $432,658, are designed to further the development of a healthy and sustainable raw materials supply chain and are awarded to research institutions and organizations across the country.
Since the inception of the grant program in 2015, the BA has provided more than $1.2 million in support of 60 projects—addressing public barley and hop variety development, hop disease and hop aroma—as well as supported affiliated national and state-level grower organizations.
This funding cycle represents a continued focus on ensuring a healthy and accessible supply chain that satisfies the unique requirements of independent craft brewers. The BA is pleased to have the opportunity to partner with a diverse group of world class researchers and institutions.
For example, sustainable and stable dryland production of high quality malt is necessary to meet the needs of the all malt industry in the Western U.S. Although barley is well adapted to dryland farming, production of malting barley has historically been under higher moisture to ensure malt quality. In dryland conditions, current barley varieties have an increased risk of rejection due to poor malt quality, resulting in a significant economic loss to farmers of more than half of the potential crop value. Therefore, growers are often reluctant to plant malting barley due to the increased risk, resulting in an unstable malt barley supply for end-users. Currently, most barley breeding is focused on selecting for quality potential instead of quality stability because most programs only test malt quality on barley grown in high production environments, and few efforts exist to improve dryland production. Brewers Association Research and Service Grant funds to Jamie Sherman at Montana State University will support breeding for malt quality stability in dryland production to empower locally grown malt barley.
Additionally, at Oregon State University, the Research and Service Grant funds connect the craft brewing community with world-class research capabilities and enable Thomas H. Shellhammer, Ph.D., Nor’Wester professor of fermentation science, to work on industry-relevant scientific and technical issues that not only advance science but answer important and practical questions faced by craft brewers.
View the complete list of 2018 grant recipients.
Proposals for 2019 funding will be accepted from March 1, 2018 to May 31, 2018. More information about the grant program can be found at BrewersAssociation.org.