Food Field Trips » Growing & Harvesting Hops
Gene L'Etoile of Four Star Farms gives a tour of his hop yard in Northfield, MA. Gene shows how hops climb at fascinating speed up tall, vertical trellis' and explains which varietals grow best in Northfield. Watch how fully-matured hops are harvested using a contraption developed by a team of hop growers, brewers, agronomists, and Christopher W. Callahan of Callahan Engineering. It was a project of the University of Vermont, the Vermont Agency of Agriculture and the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources through the USDA Specialty Crops Block Grants Program. Get a better appreciation and understanding of the beginning stages of your favorite beers.
Gene L'Etoile of Four Star Farms ventured into farming via his wife's family -- whose agricultural lineage traces back to The Mayflower. Gene's two sons decided to partake in the family business, prompting Gene to explore creative ways to generate extra farming income. Gene and family have found success in growing and milling grains, as well as producing hops to sell to local breweries.