Hopkona Farms is the Cudbouts family – that is, Jenn Cudmore and Rob Rombouts, running a hop farm in Arkona, Ontario.
It’s the start of an adventure and the culmination of long discussions. Advocates for local food production, we have planned to start a family-farm for many years. And as fans of craft beer, a hop farm seems just right. Our first step is setting up a hop yard to be part of the burgeoning Ontario hop industry. We have been growing a small number of plants for the past three years and beginning in spring 2016 we started following our dream and putting in 2 acres, with plans for further expansion in the future.
Ontario was once a huge market, but the industry moved West, to Oregon and Washington. In the last few years, with the explosion of craft brewing in Ontario, the demand for Ontario hops has increased and the industry is coming back. While still small (with only about 80 hop yards in total in Ontario) it is quickly growing, and the demand for Ontario hops is expected to outpace supply for a number of years yet.