With the revival of the small grains industry in the Northeast and the strength of the locavore movement, craft breweries and distilleries have expressed an interest in sourcing local barley for malting. Malting barley must meet specific quality characteristics such as low protein content and high germination. Many farmers are also interested in barley as a concentrated, high-energy feed source for livestock. Depending on the variety, barley can be planted in either the spring or fall, and both two- and six-row barley can be used for malting and livestock feed. Winter barley has not been traditionally grown in the Northeast due to severe winterkill. However, newly developed varieties and a changing climate have encouraged our team to investigate this crop for the area. In 2015, we undertook this project in coordination with the University of Massachusetts to evaluate the effects of winter barley variety, seeding rate, and nitrogen (N) fixing cover crops on barley yields and quality.
Vermont, University of Vermont
Darby, Heather; Emick, Hillary; and Cummings, Erica, "Winter Barley Seeding Rate, Cover Crop and Variety Trial" (2016). Northwest Crops & Soils Program. 100.