2019 Crop Report: HPA record a strong 13% increase in production volume
After more than a month of cutting, picking, drying and pressing, the numbers are in. HPA harvested 589 hectares across our three farms in 2019, which resulted in a production volume of 1,482 metric tonnes. This was a 46 hectare (8.5%), 170 metric tonne (13%) increase year-on-year across six proprietary varieties – Ella™, Enigma™, Galaxy™, HPA-016, Topaz™ and Vic Secret™ – as well as Cascade and Super Pride. Harvest commenced at the start of March and was completed by mid-April.
All three farms endured major weather events during the growing season. Our Victorian farms – Rostrevor Hop Gardens and Buffalo Valley – experienced extended periods of heatwave conditions through which our irrigation systems performed well, preventing impact on yield. Low rainfall and record overnight temperatures in March led to a slight delay in crop maturation compared to previous years. There is now 175 hectares of land under trellis at Buffalo Valley, 50 hectares of which will be harvested for the first time in 2020.
Tasmania experienced widespread bushfires throughout January when the majority of the crop at Bushy Park Estates was still in burr. Although these conditions did not affect yield, they are indicative of the hot and dry conditions that characterised this season. Bushy Park Estates went without substantial rainfall from the end of December until the end of February, with daytime temperatures climbing above average.
This year’s production volume allowed us to meet contractual obligations across all varieties. We experienced pleasing year-on-year increases in yield across almost all varieties, with a dramatic increase in Enigma™ attributed to an increase in the average maturity of recent plantings.
Harvest production volumes by variety
|Variety||Yield (Metric Tonnes)
|Vic Secret ™||225||10.8%|
Note: measurements calculated on raw hop quantities.
Despite an increase in hectares planted and production volume, the highly contracted position of our 2019 crop means that a limited amount of hops will be available in the short-term. HPA are continuing to move forward with our Buffalo Valley expansion to improve supply surety and increase varietal diversity. The $35 million project will include 300 additional hectares and a new harvest complex comprising 12 kiln floors and 2 Daunhauer pickers at completion. It is anticipated to increase our total production by 50% over a period of six years. This is a continuation of HPA’s long-term strategy to grow alongside our customers and support their successes.
Forecast production volume: Galaxy™ vs Total