The excitement surrounding aromatic hops and the modern IPA style has been instructive for the entire malting industry, according to Cryermalt founder David Cryer.
Cryer told Radio Brews News that IPA has been the most significant development in craft beer since he entered the malt game 20 years ago, after starting his career in wool exporting.
“The modern interpretation of the IPA, it’s the juggernaut that drives craft worldwide. It’s a great style everyone enjoys trying and it’s so different to what people used to drink,” he said.
“It’s been great to see that carry us all along and I think it will continue to do that. It’s a great, great style.”
Cryer said he is confident that craft beer will soon benefit from similar innovation in malt, which will not just be the domain of small craft maltsters, because the larger players have long been searching for avenues to improve their tight margins.
“Along comes craft beer, which cares more about flavour and other attributes than necessarily money,” he said.
“I think you’re going to see, in the next two to five years, a lot of changes, because there is a strong desire by the large maltings to participate in this market.
“There are opportunities there for the malting companies to make specific varieties, specific flavours that can improve their bottom line, because that’s what they need.
“They’ve seen the opportunity… they’re very aware of hops really showing the way,” he said.
Cryer said the biggest hurdle for larger players is aligning the size of their malting capacity to craft brewers’ demands.
“That’s where more development needs to happen so smaller batch sizes can be created, so we can make these speciality varieties that I think the market wants. That’s going on right now.”
Episode 118 of Radio Brews News is available to download here.