Condzella Hops Unites L.I. Farmers and Local Breweries

By: Amos S. Eno
Posted on:02/11/2013 Updated:02/12/2013

Cheers to John Condzella of Condzella Hops who is fundraising to import a hop harvesting machine for his unique hop growing venture! Please join me, as beer and farm advocate, in donating to this very worth while cause.  

Condzella, a fourth generation farmer, has been growing hops on his family farm for the past two years.  With it taking over 45 minutes to harvest just one plant, Condzella has found that the biggest barrier to making Condzella Hops a major success is harvesting the hops, not growing them.

New York has great soil and climate for growing hops. At one point in time, the state was producing over 80% of the nation’s crop. But even with music and food, harvesting by hand can be a very long and tedious task, which creates a risk of missing the small window available for harvesting the crop.

After years of searching, Condzella found the right sized hop harvester for sale at a small European farm. The Wolf WHE 140 Hopfen Pflückmaschine (“the Wolf”) is very rare and difficult to find. It is a machine specifically designed to harvest about 40 acres, so it was rendered obsolete when hop growing operations became much larger.
 
Condzella is starting a hop revolution. He is bringing local hops to local breweries to create a truly local beer. Moreover, the Wolf will be put into cooperative use for any hop farm in the area. By doing so, Condzella hopes to encourage more farmers to grow hops, and could potentially rejuvenate the hop industry in New York.  

“This Wolf is so close to changing the way people will think about Long Island beer!!! Please make a pledge and become part of the local beer revolution!  You can make a difference and help spark the resurgence of the New York Hop, uniting local farms and breweries, leading to amazing local beers for everyone! We will only be able to bring the Wolf to Long Island if we meet our goal by the deadline. If we do not meet our funding goal by the deadline Long Island will not get the harvest machine, local farms and breweries will continue to be so close yet so far apart and there will be less great, local beer to go around. Nobody wants that! So please make a pledge and share this story with everyone!”
-John Condzella 
 
See the Condzella Hops kickstarter campaign here.  The fundraising ends March 10th, so donate today! With you donation you can elect a reward, ranging from a handwritten thank you, to novelty t-shirts, to mugs, to your very own hop plant!