Programme start: 2018
Length: 7 years
PGP funding: $5.3 million
Industry funding: $7.95 million
Crown funding paid out to programme for work done to 30 September 2021: $1.3 million
Commercial partner: Hāpi Research Ltd
Estimated potential economic benefit to NZ: $171 million per annum by 2027
Background to the programme
The Hāpi – Brewing Success Primary Growth Partnership (PGP) programme aims to develop premium hops and craft beers through:
- market-led plant breeding to generate super premium varietals for industry use.
- precision hop farming and processing methods to increase productivity and quality
- a business model based on direct relationships between hop growers and brewers.
The programme will:
- accelerate the profitable growth of New Zealand’s hop and craft beer industries for the benefit of the economy
- establish hop and beer research and development that's commercially viable and sustainable
- support collaborative development of high-value, premium hop and craft beer products, both locally and internationally
- help diversify land use by supporting the establishment of new hop farms through the provision of information
- increase the number of growers, the regions that grow hops, and the range of hop varieties, to help make the industry more resilient.
The Hāpi – Brewing Success PGP programme is led by Hāpi Research Ltd, a joint venture between Brewwell Ltd (trading as Garage Project) and Freestyle Farms Ltd. Importantly, the intellectual property and expertise the programme develops will be kept in New Zealand for the benefit of industry.
The hop industry in New Zealand is tiny by international standards. Although production is increasing, growth has been much slower compared to craft beer and hop producers overseas.
There's potential to accelerate our industry's growth and improve returns to growers and the economy, but we need innovation to do this.
The programme has four interrelated projects:
- Project 1: Hop breeding. Classical breeding methods and new scientific techniques to improve the speed and efficiency of breeding. The main goal is to commercialise three new premium varietals and support the release of three royalty-free varietals.
- Project 2: Precision farming and hop processing. Research to establish optimal growing, harvesting, and processing techniques for unique flavours and aromas – from the field to the glass – including the impacts of regional differences (terroir).
- Project 3: Market development. Direct sales market for premium New Zealand hops to leading craft breweries, both local and international to raise grower returns and establish stronger customer relationships.
- Project 4: Combined hop and craft beer industry growth. Hāpi Symposium to expose New Zealand hop growers and craft brewers to international best practice. Explore new beers styles unique to New Zealand.
Hāpi Brewing Success is helping growers achieve higher prices.