Saturday, October 6, 2007

Hittin' Us Where It Hurts

Consider this the ultimate cost-of-living increase:

Beer prices are set to rise, due to jumps in the cost of malt and hops.

Read about it in the Wall Street Journal.

We homebrewers are already familiar with this reality. After pondering a bulk hop purchase for several weeks, I finally decided to pull the trigger -- but not until after hop prices had, in some cases, skyrocketed.

I'm not usually a sky-is-falling kind of guy. But let's face it: some of the specialty ingredients that we homebrewers covet are produced on a very limited basis. We can't afford to see hop varieties disappear or undergo exponential price increases. As crops fail and growers turn to more profitable options like corn, will the laws of supply and demand be enough to encourage new growers to step in?

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