by Sean on May 14, 2017

Whether you believe that South African hops are important or not will color your response to the “re-allocation” of hops from the non-traditional hop growing region.

In their SAB addition, ABInBev picked up an R&D hop operation and due to low yields (which also happened to Nelson Sauvin in New Zealand), they have made the decision to keep the hops in house for their South African brewery brand, Castle with the rest going to their “high end”.

Could the hops be better used if spread out to craft breweries? The answer is an obvious yes. Are they hops owned by SABInBev to parcel out as they wish? Again, very much yes. One more, just one more question. Are the optics really bad? Ummm, yeah.

The PR people at SABInBev must be on a year long sabbatical. Why they did not postpone the Wicked Weed sale until after the Funkatorium fest is beyond me. The “high end” and their new “partners” in crime seem bewildered each and every time that someone responds negatively.

Then to follow that up by not proactively spreading the news about the hop supply seems slow on the uptake as well. For a company that is mostly distribution focused with marketing not far behind, you would think they would master the press and social media.

We in the U.S. will lose a few special beers but we are not short of IPA’s, so maybe this is a long term good thing for style diversity. Not to mention, every time SABInBev goes full on Darth Sidious it riles the base of craft beer to action. Sometimes that is good energy to have.

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