One of the Yakima Valley’s leading hop growers teamed up with one Yakima’s leading hop brokers to create a unique blend of hops specifically designed to benefit ALS research: the Ales For ALS hop blend. Loftus Ranches and Hop Union offer this hop blend, free of charge, to breweries across the country who agree to use it to brew a beer to benefit the cause.
The beers are being brewed now (June through July). We will keep you posted here on the Washington Beer Blog as we begin to learn more about the availability of the Ales For ALS beers.
This year more than 70 breweries across the United States signed on to produce beers using the Ales For ALS hop blend and donate proceeds to the world’s leading ALS research organization—ALS Therapy Development Institute (ALS TDI). Below we provide a list of the Washington and Oregon breweries involved in the program this year. To see the complete list of participating breweries, visit the official Ales For ALS website.
Participating Washington breweries include Bale Breaker Brewing, Fremont Brewing, Mt. Tabor Brewing, Pike Brewing, Triplehorn Brewing, and Two Beers Brewing. Participating Oregon breweries include Barley Browns Brewpub, Breakside Brewery, Deschutes Brewery, and Full Sail Brewing.
Pike Brewing has already released its Ales For ALS beer: No. 4 Session Ale. Pike is donating $1 for every pint sold at The Pike Pub, and is encouraging its restaurant and bar partners to do the same. There will be select Pint Nights and Pike Beer Dinners around town where No. 4 Session IPA will be poured. Make it a hit by donating $1 donating to the cause. Individual donations are welcome too. Keep an eye on Pike’s Facebook page to stay informed.
Loftus Ranches and Hop Union wish they could involve more breweries but they simply do not have enough product. There is only so much of the hop blend to go around.
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–Above: hop harvest at Loftus Ranches.
B.T. Loftus Ranches is one of the Yakima Valley’s longest running hop growers. The family-run farm began growing hops when Prohibition ended. Today, Mike Smith, a third-generation hop grower, runs the show with his wife Cheryl. Their son, Patrick, is poised to take over the operation and become the fourth generation of the Smith family to run the farm. Loftus Ranches grows the good stuff, like Mosaic, Simcoe, Citra and many other delicious hops. The farm also continually develops new hop varieties.
About the Cause
Also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that leads to paralysis, due to the death of motor neurons in the spinal cord and brain. There is no known cure for the disease. The average person survives only 2-5 years following diagnosis. About 5,000 people in the US are diagnosed with ALS each year. There are about 30,000 people in the US diagnosed with ALS today. The worldwide population of ALS patients is estimated at 450,000.
The ALS Therapy Development Institute (ALS TDI) is the world’s leading ALS research organization and aims to discover and develop effective treatments and a cure for ALS. The organization operates as a 501c3 nonprofit: combining the optimal entrepreneurial practices of a biotechnology and pharmaceutical company with the passion and urgency of a nonprofit mission. For more information, visit the website at www.als.net.