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Norsk Handverksmalt – Update (01.16)

I hope 2016 has stated well for you all and that you are enjoying the winter weather, if you are here in the Nordics!

As the new season approaches and we start to dream of spring coming early to warm our fields for this years crops, we have dedicated this update for our future growers and the Growers Guide 2016 – Version 1.0!
We have been working with IFBM (French Institute for Brewing and Malting) to finalise the results from our field trials in 2015 and will have all the data published in the next week or so. We will ensure this is made available to all who have interest.

Norsk Håndverksmalt – Growers guide

As you have probably read my updates from last year, we have been working towards developing a set of guides for the craft producers community, here in Norway and the Nordics. During this process we have been supported by several organisations and institutions who have all provided valuable input towards this important educational resource. I would like to take the opportunity to thank each of these sponsors/supporters for their continued inputs and hope that we may continue to improve the information in the guide over the upcoming growing season and seasons to come (Please see the front cover of the guide for the list of sponsors)!

Norsk Håndverksmalt - Growers guide
Growers Guide – Navigation

Navigation throughout the guide has been developed to be user-friendly and simple. We wanted the guide to be functional and easy to reference the relevant information quickly, and without having to scroll through all the pages.

Growers Guide - Navigation

*There is a help button at the right hand corner of the guide, that can be clicked on to reveal information on how to use the guides navigation.

Growers Guide – Soil

Our chapter on soil, looks extensively at the quality of the soils required for successful grain farming and the optimum level of nutrients in your soils that will help you produce a perfect harvest of malting quality Barley.
Correct land and soil management will assist you and your crops by limiting the impact from the potential hazards faced by insufficient nutrients or or too high concentrations of impacting applications.

Growers Guide - Soil (nav.)

By selecting the “Scroll Nav” icon on the bottom right corner of the guide, you will be able to then open up the sub-chapters menu bar.

Growers Guide – Stages of Growth

Monitoring the growth of your crops will help you greatly to identify the key stages when your fertilizer applications, herbicides and other treatments can be used without harming the actual yield or health of the crop. A careful balance is required for the particular time of year, climate and additional environmental factors that can change your final harvest conditions.

Growers guide - Zadoks scale

As well as monitoring the “stages of growth”, understanding the maturing kernel, will lead to correctly estimating your final yields and the final harvesting date based on the correct moisture percentage of the matured kernel (12 – 15%).

Growers Guide - Maturing kernels

Growers Guide – Regions

The online flexibility of the growers guide will allow us to share the network of growers, maltsters and brewers through an interactive map, allowing all members to locate other growers and malt houses in relation to their business.

Growers Guide - Regions

By providing the locations of the growers in relation to the malt houses and then the malt houses in relation to the brewers, on a visible map, we will be able to ensure that the grain grown and malted for the brewers, is truly regional in relation to their brewery. We will also provide growing data on the crops on an annual basis.

Growers Guide - Malt houses

The data of yields, varieties and production volumes will all be available for the craft producers community and archived, so we can compare the seasons from year to year.

Growers Guide – Agro-Techniques

Improved methods in land and soil management is an important aspect in any grain farmers experience. We hope that we can work closely with the growers to continually improve and sustain the best tools and practices for the production of malting quality Barley.

Growers guide - Agro techniques

Working with the unreliable weather and climatic conditions in this region will require a flexible approach to the growing periods. Soil temperature, precipitation, frost, late sowing, and late harvests will all require some skilled approaches in land and crop management. We hope to also provide crops that can be more resilient to the wet and short growing season, but still produce a quality crop for the malt houses.

Growers guide - Sowing

Growers guide – General issues

Monitoring your crops health from “sowing to harvesting” will allow you to take control of common problems that are faced in every growing season. Early identification of these “General issues” will ensure you manage and reduce the risk of spoilage to your harvest.

Growers guide - General issues

The diseases section of this chapter provides a clear identification tool that can help you to quickly identify any field related issues. It is important to follow the guide to ensure you correctly monitor your fields and also carefully select plants for verification and then treatment (if required).

Growers guide - Diseases

Growers guide – Storage

Ensuring that you correctly clean and store your Barley is essential to protecting the quality of your crops. Through this chapter you can gain more knowledge in providing a healthy environment for your grain, to ensure no disease, insects or variable temperatures reduces the crops value, before sending to the malt houses.

Growers guide - Storage

We will be editing the guide and providing additional sections in each of the chapters on Organic/Økologisk production of Malting quality Barley and the guide will be translated into Norwegian later this month.
As mentioned in my last update, the guide will be located in the forum section of the website and will be available to all registered members. This will give you the option for inserting questions in the forum in the “growers guide community page“. We will make sure we come back to you quickly with any questions you may have.

If we can improve any aspects of this guide please feel free to contact me directly and we will do our best to provide any improvements.

Until next month!