Great Lakes Hop and Barley Conference Logo

Pre-registration has ended, but we will be accepting walk-in registrations onsite.

February 28 - March 2
Park Place Hotel, Traverse City

Join us for the fifth annual Great Lakes Hop and Barley Conference, February 28 - March 2 at the Park Place Hotel in Traverse City, Michigan. The conference will feature an introductory preconference for beginners on February 28th, individual hop and barley tracks covering advanced topics on March 1st, and an exciting plenary session as well as two post conference tour options on March 2nd.  We are also excited to again partner with the Michigan Brewers Guild for a special networking reception for attendees. Register today by clicking below.   

The hop track will feature John Taberna (Western Labs) discussing soil and plant nutrient testing and management, Doug Walsh (Washington State University) taking a deep dive into mite biology and management, presentations by the Hop Quality Group and Hop Growers of Michigan, as well as many Michigan State University specialists covering topics ranging from disease management to nutrient leaching.

The barley track will include a presentation on malting grains for function and flavor by Aaron MacLeod (Center for Craft Food and Beverage, NY), information on barley contracts by Ryan Hamilton (Michigan Barley Association), the 2018 barley quality report from Christian Kapp (MSU), and numerous research reports by MSU specialists.

The combined plenary session will feature a value chain, sales and marketing panel with industry experts, a sensory panel training with Roy Desrochers (Tufts University), and an exciting cover crops presentation by world renowned expert Dr. George Bird (MSU).

During the registration process, participants will be asked to select their preferred track for Friday in order to determine space needs at the facility. To learn more about the schedule, including topics, speakers and times, click on the draft agenda link below (coming soon).

February 28: Optional Pre-Conference Session - Introduction to Hop and Barley Production

March 1: Great Lakes Hop and Barley Conference - Keynote presentation, Hop Track, Barley & Malt Track, Michigan Brewers Guild Reception

March 2: Great Lakes Hop and Barley Conference - Plenary session including sensory training and cover crop presentation (Morning)

March 2: Option Tour - MI Local Hops or Great Lakes Malting Company (Afternoon)

Participant Registration Cost

Pre-Conference Registration: $50 per person
Individual Registration: $225 per person
Group Registration: $200 per person for two or more people
Saturday Afternoon Tour: $15 per person

Individual registration includes admittance into the Friday and Saturday educational sessions, continental breakfast each day, lunch on Friday, the Michigan Brewers Guild Reception on Friday evening, and the vendor trade-show.

The pre-conference registration rate includes admittance only to the Introduction to Hop and Barley Production session on Thursday, February 28 from 1-5 p.m.

The tour rate includes the cost of lunch, but does not include transportation to the facilities.

Michigan Brewers Guild Reception

On Friday evening, join us for the brewer/grower networking session, focused on hop and malt barley quality. The networking reception will provide growers with a better idea of quality requirements and help align the supply of Michigan grown hops and malt barley with brewer needs.

Optional Tours - Saturday, March 2, 1-3 p.m.

Two optional tours are available on Saturday, March 2nd from 1-3 p.m. Transportation is not provided. During registration, you will be asked to indicate if you are planning to attend one of the tours.

MI Local Hops

MI Local Hops is a 220 acre hop farm located in Williamsburg, Michigan. It is currently the largest hop farm east of the Rocky Mountains. With a goal of delivering quality Michigan grown hops to brewers all over the world, MI Local Hops is focused on quality, consistency, reliability, and customer service. The facility also provides harvesting, processing, and pelletizing services for hop farms throughout the Midwest. They store their pelletized product in a 8,000 square foot cold storage facility, and product is shipped directly from the farm to the brewery.

Address: 5555 Arnold Road, Williamsburg, MI 49690

Great Lakes Malting Company

Great Lakes Malting Company, located in Traverse City, MI, produces an assortment of malted grains for the brewing and distilling industries. Their mission is to supply the highest quality malt, while providing unparalleled service and an unwavering commitment to supporting local agriculture. Michigan is already recognized as "The Great Beer State.” By promoting our region’s agricultural capabilities, and in turn, producing high quality, locally sourced malted grains, that reputation can only grow stronger. Great Lakes Malting believes in the power of local. Great Lakes Malting Company is a fully-licensed Wholesale Food Processor under the authority of the Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development (MDARD).

Address: 3025 Cass Road, Traverse City, MI 49684

Conference Location

Park Place Hotel 
300 East State Street
Traverse City, MI 49684

Cancellation Policy

After Feb. 18, 2019, refunds will no longer be provided.

Draft Agenda


Michigan State University is committed to providing equal opportunity for participation in all programs, services and activities. Accommodations for persons with disabilities may be requested by contacting the event contact two weeks prior to the start of the event. Requests received after this date will be honored whenever possible.

Contact Information

For more information contact Betsy Braid at or 517-884-7081.