2014 a Bad Year for Malt Barley
HELENA, Mont. (AP) — Problems with the 2014 malt barley crop in the western United States have resulted in the worst year for malting production on record.
However, beer drinkers likely won't notice a price difference for their favorite pint.
Farmers and maltsters have been scrambling to salvage a large portion of the crop hit by heavy rains in August, especially in the top two barley-growing states of Montana and Idaho.
Malteurop North America malting plant manager Mark Black in Great Falls says they'll continue using the damaged crop until it dies. Until then, they won't know for sure the overall effect it will have.
Helena-based Lewis and Clark Brewing Co. head brewer Sean Tobin says malt producers are still delivering what he needs, so prices should stay steady for the foreseeable future.