Introducing the Latest in Hop Research
From the hop farming pioneers to the artisan craft brewers, we at Yakima Chief Hops continue to be inspired by the entrepreneurial spirit of the hop and brewing industries. We strive to make continuous improvements across the entire supply chain, from collaborating with farmers and breeders to improve hop quality and develop new varieties, to pioneering new hop processing technologies and research.
With this culture of innovation at our core, we have established a robust and talented Research & Development team dedicated to creating solutions and novel brewing innovations. All research is done for the betterment of our growers and brewers, and to enrich our entire supply chain through industry-leading hop discoveries.
Beer Soluble Hop Compound Research
YCH has pioneered the use of cutting-edge hop lab analysis techniques to further unlock the maximum potential of aroma hops. The YCH R&D facility houses one of the only labs in the world with the capability to analyze hops via GC-QTOF and GC-SCD technology and study previously undetectable aromatic components. This technology allows us to explore the aroma potential of novel hop compounds – specifically beer soluble compounds that survive the brewing process.
GC-QTOF and GC-SCD technology unlock the potential to identify hop compounds that work synergistically and have a greater potential of surviving into finisher beer. Much historical attention has been paid to components that do not tend to make an impact in finished beer aroma, leaving brewers grasping to understand how to better translate raw hop aroma into the final product.
Utilizing GC-QTOF and GC-SCD technology, the YCH R&D Team is able to quantify concentrations of beer-soluble compounds within hop varieties, creating a framework that helps brewers utilize hop varieties to their maximum effect. This research provides a massively important link in answering the persistent question:
How can I have more control over the aroma characteristics in my finished beers?
The problem of translating raw hop aroma to finished beer aroma has befuddled brewers for years. This new discovery helps bridge the gap by focusing specifically on beer solubility.
How to apply this to your homebrews
GC-QTOF and GC-SCD technology is not just research, but it’s also a tool that can be used to help brewers make more informed decisions about when and how to use hops. Hops with higher concentrations of survivable compounds have a better likelihood of being successful when used earlier in the brewing process than hops with low concentrations of these same compounds. Early additions include late kettle, whirlpool, and active fermentation dry hopping.
Similarly, we can say that hops with lower concentrations are likely to find better successes and a more positive impact in beer when used later in the process, such as post-fermentation dry hopping. This research can also be used to blend hops that maximize beneficial concentrations by focusing on balancing high concentrations. It can also be used to help brewers load wort streams with high concentrations of survivable compounds early. High concentrations of survivable compounds in whirlpool and active fermentation dry hopping can create conditions necessary for beneficial biotransformation.
This new understanding of beer soluble hop compounds allows us to answer such questions as:
- What variety should I use?
- Where in the process should I use it?
- Which hops work together in combination?
- How can I use a variety to its maximum effect?
Yakima Chief Hops is thrilled to share this research and knowledge with the homebrew community to help elevate the efficiency of your brews and the flavors in your beer. All of this information is free and accessible on CryoPopBlend.com under Survivable Compounds Poster, which includes a chart that lists specific hop compounds and variety examples.
On CryoPopBlend.com, you can also learn about our latest product, Cryo Pop® Original Blend, born of beer soluble hop compound research! Combined with our industry-leading Cryo Hops® production process, Cryo Pop® Original Blend is a supercharged pellet blend packed with the most effective aromatic components. It delivers massive tropical, stone fruit, and citrus aromas into your finished beers.
Cheers to the latest in hop science!