For the fourth harvest season in a row, barley growers in Wyoming and Montana have filled Briess storage bins with some of the highest quality malting barley grown in the world. We couldn’t be more thankful to them for the hard work and passion they put into their craft – so we threw them a party!

Mike Lohr and his daughter Virginia of Powell, WY

The fourth annual Briess Barley Grower Appreciation Dinner filled a large hall at the Park County Fairgounds (Powell, WY) with more than 350 growers, Briess staff and two craft brewers who came to thank the growers on behalf of the American Craft Brewing Industry. There was food, a wide selection American craft beer, door prizes and lots of conversing.

The Briess Barley Grower Advisory Committee helps connect more than 350 growers in Wyoming and Montana with Briess Barley Ops in Ralston, WY. Members include (l-r) Ken Athun (Wilsall, MT), Brenton Paxton (Manderson, WY), Fred Hopkin (Powell, WY), Brent Rageth (Byron, WY), Joe Yedlicka (Fromberg, MT), Alex Smith (Saint Xavier, MT), Kelly Brester (Laurel, MT) and Jim Collins (not pictured, Thermopolis, WY).
Barley harvest is complete, but barley deliveries continue daily at the Briess elevator in Ralston, WY.

Briess couldn’t be more proud to be the connecting dot between these growers and American craft beer. Like other niche crops these growers produce, malting barley requires a great deal of experience to grow successfully. And the uniqueness of the flood-irrigated Big Horn Basin up to the drylands of Southern Montana makes it possible for them to produce exceptionally high-quality crops and, ultimately, exceptionally high-quality specialty malts for American craft beer.

The Briess Barley Operation in Ralston, WY, receives, processes, stores and ships millions of bushels of malting barley to the Briess Barley Operation in Manitowoc, WI. From there, the barley is transported for malting to one of three Briess malting operations in WI.

So raise a pint to these and all the barley growers in North America, and join us in thanking them once again for caring as much about growing barley as we care about malting it and you care about brewing with it. Cheers!

Jack & Meriam McMurry of Farson, WY
Gary Broyles and Courtney Herzog of Rapelje, MT
Special thanks to Tim Gossack of Bell’s Brewery (left) and Chris Holbroook of New Belgium Brewing Co. for taking time from your schedules to travel to WY to personally thank these growers!
Susan Duyck and baby of Powell, WY
Marc Rodriguez of Powell, WY
Briess Wyoming Barley Ops manager Rick Redd and wife Cheryl.
Casey Coburn of Billings, MT
Susan Broyles of Montana and Trudy Smith of Montana.
Staff hosting the event included (l-r) Dan Burick (Division Manager-Mountain Region), Penny Pickart (Division Manager-Central Region), Rick Redd (WY Barley Ops Regional Manager), Ryan O’Toole (COO), Jess Klemm (WY Barley Ops), Chris Holbrook (New Belgium Brewing Co.), Judy Bullinger (WY Barley Ops Admin), Tim Gossack (Bell’s Brewery), Bernadette Wasdovitch (Marketing Comm Manager), Ron Mihalko (Waterloo Malthouse Plant Manager), Bob Olberding (WY Barley Ops), Ross Erickson (Briess Barley Procurement for MN and ND), and Cameron Barker, Tammy Schalla, and Ken Campbell (all WY Barley Ops).