Buying Salmon-Safe means making choices every day that reduce our impact on our local watersheds.
As a brewery, we are committed being responsible stewards of our home—so we’re doing our part. The hops in this beer use Salmon-Safe hops from Indie Hops, an Oregon-based hop developer and supplier. Indie Hops works with a network of top-notch growers, most of whom grow hops on Salmon-Safe certified farms.
WHY IS THIS IMPORTANT?
“Salmon is the canary in the coal mine. It’s the indicator of how healthy a watershed is,” states David Burger, Salmon-Safe Partner.
Founded in 1997 by river and native fish protection organization Pacific Rivers, Salmon-Safe’s mission is to transform land management practices so Pacific salmon can thrive in West Coast watersheds. This effort is vital, when you consider the fact that wild salmon are in decline globally with just 10% of native fish returning to West Coast watersheds compared to their historic abundance.
The Pacific Northwest is home to most of the last wild salmon in the continental US. It’s also where most US hops are grown along the Yakima and Willamette River watersheds.
Salmon-Safe: Save wild salmon
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According to Salmon Safe Co-Founder, Dan Kent, 80% of the pollution in the Willamette River comes from non-point source runoff—which means it comes from agricultural fields or city streets. To date, Kent says there isn’t data to show what percentage to attribute to each source, “but we know the agricultural impacts can be profound.”
This reality propelled Gayle Goschie into action. She is a third-generation hop grower and one of the farmers that grows hops for Indie Hops. Goschie Farms was the first hop farm to achieve Salmon-Safe certification. This inspired Indie Hops to encourage other growers to do the same, and many other hop farms have followed suite including Coleman Agriculture and Sodbuster Farms. These growers probably grew the hops that flavored your beer!
Salmon-Safe certification is done through rigorous, third parties; and key elements include:
- phasing out pesticides that are harmful to fish and wildlife
- restoring stream buffers
- reducing irrigation water use
- enhancing biodiversity through ecological set asides or native pollinator-friendly plantings
- ensuring that there is no runoff or erosion from farms
Salmon-Safe is “whole farm” certification so large farms must transition an entire operation to Salmon-Safe practices in order to certify a crop like hops. This magnifies Salmon-Safe’s impact across the landscape.
“By seeking out craft beers that feature the Salmon-Safe logo, consumers are voting with their dollars for healthy agricultural practices that help wild salmon spawn and thrive.”
- Dan Kent, Co-Founder & Executive Director, Salmon-Safe
Together—consumers, brewers, growers and suppliers—are making a big impact by supporting Salmon-Safe hop growing.
Please help us spread the word about this important cause. Salmon-Safe not only pertains to craft beer. Certification is available for urban development, vineyards, farms, corporate and university campuses, infrastructure, parks and natural areas, and golf courses. Learn more at Salmon-Safe, post about this beer and mention our brewery and @SalmonSafe.
Cheers to great beer, brewed with passion and infused with flavor from responsibly-grown hops!