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7th February 2014

Britain’s Top of the Hops

British hop growers and brewers gathered at the offices of Charles Faram Ltd near Malvern in Worcestershire for the unveiling of the results of the Institute of Brewing and Distilling’s annual British Hop Competition. 

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 sixty one samples from the 2013 harvest were submitted to the competition.  

The overall champion was a sample of the hop variety Admiral, grown by Frank Tipples of Harts Heath in Kent.  The award was presented by Simon Jackson, Chief Executive of the Institute of Brewing and Distilling.

Simon said: “The enormous interest in the years hop competition, with over 30% more entries than last year, reflects the growing interest and demand for British hops.  The standard of entries was very high and the judges had their work cut out to choose a winner.  The wining sample of Admiral was grown in Kent and was chosen because it beautifully demonstrated the powerful orange and citrus aroma that is so typical of this variety.”

“Britain’s brewers are increasingly rediscovering the virtues of British hops and several are now brewing beers with single hop varieties. These brews vividly demonstrate the vast array of complex flavours that hops contribute to the nation’s favourite drink.  Beer can taste of tangerine, grapefruit, chocolate, blackcurrant, spice, pepper, apricot, marmalade or even mint. These flavours are all achieved by using different varieties of hop. “


Photograph: Chris Lillywhite receives the overall champion prize on behalf of Frank Tipples of Harts Heath in Kent, from IBD Chief Executive, Simon Jackson.   
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 Hop Competition was judged by a panel of Master Brewers: John Bexon (Head Brewer – Greene King), Derek Prentice (Brewing Manager – Fullers and current British Guild of Beer Writer’s Brewer of the Year). Mark Slater (Head Brewer – Theakstons) and Steve Curtis (Technical Manager – Institute of Brewing and Distilling). 
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