BALTIMORE (WJZ) — The University of Maryland has a new research partner, to help local growers get the best ingredients for your beer.

Maryland’s largest brewery and university are teaming up to hopefully take the state’s beer to the next level before it’s poured into a glass and served chilled, the raw ingredients in beer, look like tiny green pods.

“Hops are these little cones that give bitterness and aromatics to beer,” says Matt Brophy Chief Operating Officer, Flying Dog Brewery.

The University of Maryland’s College of Agriculture and Natural Resources has been growing hops for a couple years.

Now the university is teaming up with Frederick-based Flying Dog Brewery, pulling resources together to help harvest valuable research.

“So that when a grower says this is something I want to do, we can explain to them how to do it, what varieties to select, how to manage these plants,” says

There are 24 hop-varieties growing in the University’s western Maryland farm, each with their own special characteristics.

“There you go. Now smell them.”

The idea is to see which ones do well in this climate, and which will work well for local brewers?

“Hops used to be grown in the east and in Maryland. It migrated out to the west. And we’re bringing some
Varieties back east to see how well they do here,” says Matt Brophy, Chief Operating Officer: Flying Dog Brewery, and if the trial is successful.

“We’re going to use them in beer if they do well. So it should help all Maryland brewers and beyond,” says Brophy.

This project is an investment of both money and time. It could take anywhere from 3 to 5 years before researchers know if it was a success.

UMD plans to add another Maryland brewery to the project. There are over 60 breweries in the state, and climbing.

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