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David Sparks Ph.d Dynamics of Barley
by David Sparks Ph.d, click here for bio

Program: Idaho Ag Today
Date: September 12, 2018

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A chat with Kelly Olsen, Administrator of the Idaho Barley Commission concerning the dynamics of growing barley in Idaho. the big guy is Anheuser Busch and we want to continue to meet their needs. We also have Miller and Coors with big programs in Idaho. We have Great Western Malting Company that is an independent malting company. They are not representing a single beer company. While they may malt for some of the big guys, they also produce the malt that is available to our craft brewers throughout Idaho and I would say that pretty much every one of these craft brewers, and there are 53, maybe more, across the state, it is a very exciting time to be in that business. They are procuring malt, that is the processed barley, from Great Western. They are using and they want to use local ingredients so they are using Idaho malt barley. Great Western has the same interest, promoting long-term sustainability on the farm. That means efficient use of all the resources and making it economically profitable for the grower or they wouldn’t be growing barley. Growers are going to grow crops where they can make money. Our customers understand that. Sometimes it is finding that balance between sustainable use of the resource and economic sustainability. I think we do a pretty good job of that in Idaho and is why these companies have very large contract programs and have had them for 45 years.

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