U.S. Senator Ron Wyden Supports Hops Protections In Farm Bill

U.S. Senator Ron Wyden discussing the craft beer industry in this photo from 2015.

Oregon’s U.S. Senator Ron Wyden has recruited fellow U.S. Senators Michael F. Bennet (D-CO), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), and Cory Gardner (R-CO) on maintaining provisions in the current Farm Bill that support hop growers in the Pacific Northwest. Wyden and the other three U.S. Senators wrote a letter to leaders of the Senate and House Agriculture committees to gain their support.

Part of this year’s Farm Bill includes protections against diseases threatening hops production in Oregon, Washington, Idaho and beyond. The full letter can be viewed here: 2018 Farm Bill – Hops Research

Here are additional details from the press release sent by Senator Wyden’s office…

Wyden and three other senators wrote leaders of the Senate and House Agriculture committees that their request comes as the U.S. hops industry faces the costly problem of crop diseases like powdery mildew and downy mildew.

“This threat means the signature hop used in a very large number of craft beers is in danger of losing its resistance to a very common and costly disease,” they wrote. “This development could lead to decreased yields for farmers, as well as higher prices and lower quality hops for the growing craft brewing industry.”

Language in the Senate Farm Bill addresses these threats by authorizing the Agricultural Research Service to work on powdery mildew and downy mildew. 

Oregon ranks third nationally behind Washington and Idaho in hops production, according to the Hop Growers of America.

Joining Wyden in the letter are Sens. Michael F. Bennet (D-CO), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), and Cory Gardner (R-CO).

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