Skip to main content
28th January 2013

Britain’s Top Hop Announced

British hop growers and brewers gathered at Stocks Farm in Worcestershire for the unveiling of the results of the Institute of Brewing and Distilling’s annual British Hop Competition for the 2012 crop.

The competition dates back to 1944 and is judged by a panel of Master Brewers who draw on their personal experience as Head Brewers to judge the quality of the hops.  One hundred and twenty two samples from the 2012 harvest were submitted to the competition by forty five growers from across Britain.

The overall champion was a sample of Fuggle hops grown by James Rickard of Rickards Farm in Canterbury, Kent.  The award was presented by Mark Woodhouse, Chairman of Hall and Woodhouse and Master of the Worshipful Company of Brewers.  Full details of all the winners are listed below.

Simon Jackson, Chief Executive of the Institute of Brewing and Distilling said “Britain is famed around the world as one of the world’s top brewing nations. The excellence of our local raw materials has been a key contributor to this noble tradition. ”

“This year’s winning hop variety, Fuggles, can be traced back to Kent in the 1870s and has a wonderfully delicate, minty, grassy and slightly floral aroma. The winning sample ably demonstrated why this British hop variety continues to be one of aristocrats of the hop world.”

Hop Farmer and British Hop Association Committee member, Ali Capper added “Hop growers and merchants are thrilled to welcome so many brewers to these awards. It’s thanks to your enthusiasm that British hops are going through such resurgence.   You have shown how they can be used to brew beers with a myriad of different flavours – tangerine, citrus, grass, grapefruit, chocolate, blackcurrant, spice, pepper, apricot, marmalade and mint. An endless array of delicate but complex flavours to tempt the palate of every beer connoisseur.”

The British Hop website* has a flavour guide that allows brewers and beer drinkers to discover which beer flavours are associated with which hop variety.




For further information   +44 (0)7808 096250



Click here for Photograph.   Caption: The 2012 British Hop Awards: Braving the snow at Stocks Farm in Worcestershire.  Left to right: Simon Jackson (IBD), Ali Capper (BHA), James Rickard (winning grower); Mark Woodhouse (Master of the Worshipful Company of Brewers) and Paul Corbett (Managing Director of Charles Faram).



Notes to Editors



The Institute of Brewing and Distilling (IBD) is the world’s leading professional body for people working in brewing and distilling.  The organisation originated as the “Laboratory Club” in 1886 and now has an international membership of 4000 people based in over 50 countries world-wide.



The British Hop Association, formerly the National Hop Association, was formed in 1996 to ensure that the industry has a coordinated approach to its activities and in particular the research and development of new hop varieties through its subsidiary Wye Hops. The BHA is a limited company, with two Directors from each of the 3 growers selling groups sitting on its Board. The Growers Groups are: English Hops Ltd, Hawkbrand Hops Ltd & Wealden Hops Ltd. The British Hop Association is the forum by which growers make representation to the UK Government, the EC, international & national industry committees. The BHA has a brand new website that provides information on British Hops for brewers and merchants around the world



The IBD would like to thank Charles Faram & Co for their very generous sponsorship of the Awards Presentation.


The IBD would also like to thank Fullers, Freeminer Brewery, Greene King, Hop Back Brewery, St Peters Brewery and the Wye Valley Brewery for donating samples of beers brewed with British Hops for the award ceremony.