Want to Sell Off Equipment from Old Hops Farm
Answered by: Richard Alan Miller
Question from: Happy Ghag
Posted on: March 24, 2007

My name is Happy Ghag from Chilliwack, B.C. I have bought an old hop farm as well as acquiring all the equipment involved. I have kiln dryers as well as a binder dryer. Since I will not be harvesting hops I would like to sell the equipment. I saw your article about hops and thought you may be able to shed some light on this issue.

Your first name is cool. And, I knew old Fred Haas from Abbotsford Hop Farms. So, that suggests your facility was once one of that network up there for John I. Haas in Yakima. Depending on the state of the equipment, you may have "gold mine."

I worked for Henry Barth (Nuremberg, Germany) in 1985, organizing alternative crop studies. At that time he owned John I. Haas, and was the largest farmer in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana, but not in B.C. -- a total of 28 farms. This is where I first began to actually learn how to farm alternative crops.

Let’s begin with various categories of your equipment. All of my suggestions presume all equipment is still usable and has been maintained over the years. Your hop farm probably has 1930 equipment. Your kiln floors are probably your most valuable asset now, from an alternative agricultural point-of-view.

Your leaf strippers can be used to shred numerous marketable greens, including Western Red Cedar and such wildflowers as yarrow and tansy. Maybe the regional forest minister in your area would like to look into a forest farming project, using matching grants from Appropriate Technology. Get the idea?

With that said, I am available as an outside consultant, and have written these kinds of grants all my life. My background in physics gave me a slant that always worked.

What I did is to organize three primary hop facilities into managing more than 28 other farms and regional wildcrafting. By 1988, Hass Botanical was a primary supplier in the world markets for such basics as peppermint and spearmint leaf.

Your farm could (if kept intact) become THE center for the pharmaceutical trade. Chilliwack is strategically located, as farm communities go.

Rather than piece sell out this original set-up, consider how much more it could be held in worth -- to the right man who could see my vision. I’m too old, but I’ll help from the sidelines. My Canadian partner (some 32 years) is up on Denman Island, growing mushrooms.

I always used to open my workshops by saying "Since recorded history, the country that holds the spice trade holds world trade" (from my book "The Potential of Herbs as a Cash Crop"). Consider that the ginseng trade moved to Vancouver when Hong Kong closed down -- not to Hamburg. All of the pharmaceutical houses are now in Vancouver.

You have an opportunity here for someone with some far-reaching vision. I can give you the words, and simply say. It is what must happen now. There is a need today for more than 60,000 new small farms. Who is going to train them on how to do it? A functioning hop farm, as a focused tool, could in many ways change the ways of the world.

I am a small farm community advocate, and I am saddened to see this way of life lost forever. So, I work as an outside consultant helping people survive.


Back to Commercial Herb Production and Marketing | Q & A Index

Copyright © 1997-2021 Otto Richter and Sons Limited. All rights reserved.