YAKIMA, Wash. — Pacific Northwest hop acreage increased 17 percent this year putting Washington, Idaho and the United States on track for new record levels, according to USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service.
U.S. acreage is forecast at 51,115 up 7,482 from 43,633 in 2015 and besting a record of 44,653 set in 1915.
Of the U.S. total, Washington is estimated at 37,475 up 5,317 from its record of 32,158 in 2015. Washington accounts for 73 percent of the total U.S. acreage.
Oregon is estimated at 7,669 acres, up 1,057 from 6,612 in 2015. Oregon is 15 percent of the U.S. total. Oregon’s record was 26,000 acres in 1935.
Idaho is estimated at 5,971 up 1,108 from a record 4,863 in 2015. It is 12 percent of the U.S. acreage.
In late April, Hop Growers of America in Moxee, Wash., predicted 51,275 U.S. acres for 2016. It is including lesser acreage in states outside the Northwest that NASS is not tracking.
Acreage increases continue to be driven by the increase in craft breweries, Ann George, administrator of Hop Growers of America and the Washington Hop Commission, has said. That trend is expected to continue to 2020, she has said.
In April, the International Hop Growers Convention in Paris estimated fall 2016 U.S. hop production at 97 million pounds, up from 80.2 million in 2015. Global production is expected to increase from 190.4 million pounds to 232 million pounds.
The 2016 Northwest crop looks good with normal pest pressure but erratic weather causing higher disease pressure of downy and powdery mildew, NASS said in a June 10 news release. Water supply is expected to be adequate with junior water right holders in the Yakima Basin, where most U.S. hops are grown, to receive 86 percent of normal irrigation water.