Industry All Access Exclusive

The Malt Outlook: Finally, Some Good News?

Despite recent troubles with input costs and supply chain, the vibes coming from the malt market seem relatively calm and upbeat. Hey, let’s not jinx it.

Don Tse Sep 18, 2023 - 13 min read

The Malt Outlook: Finally, Some Good News? Primary Image

Photo: Jamie Bogner

There is plenty of unwelcome news going around the brewing industry these days, whether it’s a lack of growth, rising input costs, or a name no less weighty than Anchor having to close its doors. And, in recent years, barley and malt have had their share of unpleasant headlines.

We’re just two years on from malt’s annus horribilis, 2021, with its historically bad barley harvest and persistent pandemic-era supply-chain problems. Maltsters had to work magic with the barley, and many brewers tested their skills with unfamiliar malt of variable quality—some even turning to exogenous enzymes to compensate for out-of-spec ingredients.

Last year was one of recovery, despite some instability in the global grain market due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. While the worst may be in the past, for now, wise brewery operators keep abreast of developments in malt supply.

Access All of the Brewing Industry Guide

Subscribe today to access all of the in-depth brewing stories & advice you won't find anywhere else (including this article). Subscription includes unlimited access to every brewing report, brewing course (60+), article, video (55+), magazine issue (40+), and more.

Don Tse is an internationally recognized beer writer and beer judge, working from his home base in the middle of North America’s barley belt.