Midwest Hop and Beer Analysis, LLC

Providing a quality chemical analysis service for regional hop growers and craft beer brewers in the Midwest.

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Hop Testing

If harvesting boiling (bittering) hops,
harvest when the alpha acids peak.

If harvesting finishing (aroma/flavoring) hops,
harvest when the essential oils peak.

How do You Know When to Harvest?

Determining when to harvest your hops is one of the more controversial topics involving the growing and harvesting of hops. Growers have passed down experience through generations of growing and experimenting with the plants. Unfortunately, hop cones don't turn red when they are "ripe" and by the time they have turned a golden brown it is far too late! Some growers will tell you they simply use intuition and luck. Still other, more scientifically inclined, folks tend to rely on measurables such as moisture or dry-matter content. On one extreme you will have those who are counting the Degree-Days, rainfall and sunny/cloudy days from pruning and training. On the other extreme you will find those who smile and politely explain that its a "family thing" passed down from generation to generation and if they tell you they'd be obligated to kill you to maintain the family secret.

If harvesting for alpha acids,
test for alpha acids.

If harvesting for essential oils,
test for essential oils.

How We Can Help

Monitoring your hops through periodic testing prior to harvest enables you to determine the optimum time to harvest. Our "Pre-Harvest" test package is a cost-effective way to ensure the optimal harvest timing.