Nora Driscoll

Farming Status and Plans

Farming status:

Not currently farming

Description of farming status, plans, and practices:

My 2 partners and I are looking to start a commercial hops yard on a property with well draining soil (gravely loam preferred). We are currently working to finalize our business plan, but our 5-year goal is to farm 120 acres with a full processing plant. We have been growing hops as a hobby for 4 years, then built a small half-acre infrastructure and lost the land due to the owner choosing to go in another direction. We have decided to broaden our search for land and hope to find someone with land that is as excited as we are about putting New York State back on the map as the top growers of the finest quality hops in the United States. We are looking to own long term, however we are open to a number of ideas if both parties are of the same mindset.

Description of marketing method:

Our plan is to sell our hops directly to breweries for the most part. We have personal relationships with members of several breweries in the Lower Hudson Valley for our early year hops, and we will branch out from there. New York State has been trying to reinvigorate agriculture through beer making so the need for product that is New York State grown for New York State businesses is higher than ever. The need for hops is high and we hope to start filling the orders that currently have to come from out west.

Does this farmer have a business plan?

In progress

Farm Characteristics

Preferred location:

Albany, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Washington

Desired acreage:

51-100, >100

Crops and Livestock

Primary crops:

Other Crops

Description of livestock/crops:

We will be growing only hops.

Farmland Tenure

Tenure options desired:

For Lease, Partnership, For Sale, Other Tenure Agreement

Description of tenure options desired:

We are looking to own long term, however we are open to a number of ideas if both parties are of the same mindset.

Additional Information

Experience description:

We are currently in our 4th year growing hops in our backyard garden and have learned a lot in those years about what their needs are and how they need to be processed for sales. We currently gift our hops to friends within a few breweries and do home brewed beers as well. We built the infrastructure for a half acre hope yard a year ago then attended several conferences, met with industry leaders and one of our partners participated in an internship at a 500 acre hop yard, so we have come a long way. We have identified our mistakes and are now prepared to move forward utilizing space efficiently and grow hop bines structurally correct and safe from illness.