Barley

Hannah Turner tosses barley at Post Agronomy Farm in Bozeman September 5.
Rachel Cramer / Yellowstone Public Radio


Montana is one of the biggest malt barley producers in the nation. Most of the grain goes to Anheuser-Busch and MillerCoors, but that’s starting to shift as more microbreweries seek out local ingredients for a sense of place and unique flavors. Researchers breeding barley for the craft beer boom will be speaking with brewers at a conference in Missoula this week.

Wheat and barley fields south of Manhattan, Montana, April 27, 2019.
Rachel Cramer / Yellowstone Public Radio

Farming is always a gamble in Montana, but this year a new tariff on wheat and an undefined trade deal with Japan means more uncertainty for farmers as they plant this spring. President Trump discussed agricultural trade negotiations last week with the prime minister of Japan — Montana’s largest importer of wheat. The talk comes two years after Trump pulled the U.S. out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership.