Cheers! New hop ma­chine first of its kind in area

The Glengarry News - - Classified­s - News The News


Staff North Glen­garry’s 2018 Ex­cel­lence in Agri­cul­ture Award win­ner con­tin­ues to make a name for it­self.

Dur­ing a brief press con­fer­ence last Fri­day at the barn hous­ing a re­cently-ac­quired sys­tem of hops milling and pel­letiz­ing ma­chin­ery, Dala­gra Farms pres­i­dent Kurt MacSweyn spoke highly of the im­pact it should have on the lo­cal agri­cul­tural com­mu­nity – on both the fi­nan­cial and do­mes­tic fronts.

“This ma­chine will al­low us to pel­letize our own hops with­out hav­ing to spend money out­side the com­mu­nity,” said Mr. MacSweyn, who is in the early stages of a part­ner­ship with Woods Brothers Brew­ing Co. in Glen Robert­son.

“It also helps other hops grow­ers. I know in talk­ing to a few of them, they had to travel to Tweed be­fore, driv­ing three hours or what­ever. They’d be up there for a cou­ple of days and away from their young fam­i­lies. Now, they can drive here...go home at the end of the day if it is not done, and then come back the next morn­ing.”

The hops pel­letiz­ing equip­ment – man­u­fac­tured in the Czech Repub­lic – cost just over $140,000.

It is cur­rently the only sys­tem of its kind in the re­gion.

Mr. MacSweyn told that he was im­pressed with the owner of the com­pany that man­u­fac­tured the equip­ment who “flew in from the Czech Repub­lic, set up ev­ery­thing, and kind of did some test runs” for him after the ma­chin­ery was pro­cured in late Novem­ber.

As for the ad­di­tion of hops pro­duc­tion and pro­cess­ing to Dala­gra’s ex­ist­ing cash crop op­er­a­tions, he ex­plained that an in­creas­ing num­ber of craft brew­eries are switch­ing to the smaller, pro­cessed/pel­letized hops, thus cre­at­ing a de­mand for the prod­uct.

“They like it (pel­letized ver­sions) be­cause it’s a lot cleaner,” said Mr. MacSweyn.

“If they use the full hops, it kind of gums up a lit­tle bit, and it’s tougher to clean. And as far as stora­bil­ity, it takes up a lot less room, too.”

$20,000 grant

The to­tal $140,000-plus price tag for the equip­ment was off­set by a $20,000 grant from FedDev On­tario’s Eastern On­tario De­vel­op­ment Pro­gram (EODP) ap­proved this past May but not of­fi­cially an­nounced un­til last Fri­day.

The fund­ing was dis­trib­uted through the Corn­wall and the Coun­ties Com­mu­nity Fu­tures De­vel­op­ment Cor­po­ra­tion, one of 15 Com­mu­nity Fu­tures De­vel­op­ment Cor­po­ra­tions (CFDCs) in eastern On­tario funded through FedDev On­tario.


BOON: Kurt MacSweyn ex­plains how a new hop pro­ces­sor will ben­e­fit the agri­cul­tural com­mu­nity.

GRAND OPEN­ING TO­DAY: The “big­ger and bet­ter” MacEwenCou­nty Line gas sta­tion and con­ve­nience store in Lan­caster opened last week but its of­fi­cial open­ing will be held to­day (De­cem­ber 19) with a rib­bon-cut­ting cer­e­mony set for 11 a.m. The Maxville-based com­pany in­vested $1.7 mil­lion in the new 3,035-square-foot fa­cil­ity on Mil­i­tary Road.

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