The Institute of Agricultural Sciences at the University of Florida are in the second year of their nearly $200,000 grant to study and develop a viable hop plant that can be harvested and used in the state of Florida. It has gotten many local craft beer makers keeping an eye on the current results.

More beer

The nearly $200,000 grant was given to the Institute by Florida's Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. Currently the Gulf Coast Education and Research Center in Wimauma, Florida is in the process of planting Hops in different components.

Some seedlings will be exposed to light under lamps, others placed on a windowsill with zip-top bags placed over the heads to preserve moisture, and planting hops in fields.

Florida is currently home to 110 Craft Beer breweries. Craft beer making in Florida adds $2 billion a year to Florida's economy. In Florida alone, these craft beer industries account for 12 percent of beer making as a whole according to the data from the Brewers Association..

Getting hoppy

The consumers drive the growth of craft beer companies and industries in this state in Florida. Not only are the customers staying loyal to craft companies in different parts of the state, but there is a growing open communication system between brewers and innovate partnerships within the industry among others.

But while people enjoy local beer made proudly in Florida, the biggest problem with craft breweries being expanded comes from them having to import most of their ingredients from outside the state. One of them that is important to beer making is hops..

Many craft beer makers in Florida have to import nearly 2 million pounds of hops and malts from places such as Oregon, Washington, and even Germany.

Hopefully, the success of growing and developing a hop plant that can thrive in the Florida weather would mean that craft beer makers don't have to import hops and can help save them some money to do other things like inventing new beer or expanding their companies.