Wildlife on the Verde River in Arizona

News

Sinagua Malt News will focus on market solutions to river conservation challenges, primarily in the West. News articles will feature innovative approaches to conservation by private enterprise, governmental entities, nonprofit organizations, or partnerships thereof. We hope that you find the content of interest!

KNAU (podcast)

Can Beer Help Save the Verde River?

Arizona’s Verde River has a lot of competing uses: city dwellers, farmers, kayakers and environmentalists all want its water in different ways. But a new project aims to unite everyone over a glass of beer. A farm in Camp Verde has planted a crop of malt barley, to conserve water and give Arizona breweries a key ingredient to craft a truly local beer. KNAU’s Melissa Sevigny reports. 

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Chip Norton, President Sinagua Malt

KJZZ (podcast)

Arizona Farm Helping Beer Lovers, Water Conservation

Switching crops on a Verde Valley farm has helped lead to the state’s first malt house opening up. Sinagua Malt in Camp Verde says it’ll produce four tons of malted barley a week for breweries and bakeries sourced from barley grown at Hauser and Hauser Farms. The 600-acre farm once grew corn but has now swapped its crop for barley and, in the process, has potentially saved millions of gallons of water in the Verde River. Zach Hauser, a fourth-generation farmer at Hauser Farms, joined The Show to talk about it.

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Chip Norton, President Sinagua Malt

The Nature Conservancy (press release)

Cutting Edge Water Markets Support Farming and Preserve Precious Resources

For years, states in the western U.S. have faced record-setting droughts, putting pressure on local communities, economies, and businesses.  According to many seasonal predictions and forecasts, these droughts are expected to continue or worsen over the course of the summer.

Western states continue to have to balance weather and climate conditions with the need to preserve water for people to drink, industrial use, and other sectors, including agriculture.  To help address some of these challenges, The Nature Conservancy and partners in California and Arizona are looking to create new markets to support economic development and agricultural production with the need to conserve and preserve water resources.

Read the full press release

azfamily.com

Arizona's first malt house helps keep the Verde River and local beer flowing

Customers at the Wren House brewery in Phoenix might not realize it, but when they draw a draft here, they are helping make sure water still flows some 100 miles to the north in the Verde River.

That is because at Hauser and Hauser Farms in the Verde Valley, they have now started growing acre after acre of barley, grown all spring long and replacing the traditional summer corn they usually grow.

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Chip Norton, President Sinagua Malt

Arizona Daily Sun

Verde River advocates look to craft beer to save the desert river's flows

It may be just the start of the growing season in Flagstaff, but fields at Zach Hauser’s Verde Valley farm are already blanketed with bright green barley plants. Nearing a foot tall, this barley crop is the biological starting point of a new project that links farmers and craft brewers, conservation initiative and commercial endeavor, all in an effort to restore flows to the Verde River.

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Chip Norton, President Sinagua Malt

National Geographic

Farmers, Brewers, and Conservationists Partner to Keep a River Flowing

The fact that a pint of beer requires a whopping 37 gallons (140 liters) of water to produce can turn a favorite beverage into a guilty pleasure.

But what if, instead, each hoppy sip helped add flow to a depleted river?

If all goes according to plan that will soon happen in Arizona’s Verde River, a flowing gem in the Colorado River Basin and a lifeline for fish, birds and wildlife in the American Southwest. But like many western rivers, the Verde flows low, and in some stretches not at all, during the hot summer months, when farmers divert water to irrigate crops.

And that gave Chip Norton, a retired businessman and river enthusiast, an idea: switch a portion of the valley’s farmland from crops like corn that are thirstiest in summer to barley, which grows earlier in the year and so requires much less water when the river is stressed.

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Chip Norton, President Sinagua Malt

Phoenix News Times

Connection Saison at Arizona Wilderness Brewery Is An Entirely "Arizona Born" Ale

Since opening about three years ago, Arizona Wilderness Brewery has established itself as one of the best, most interesting breweries in the state... All of which is to say, it should come as little surprise that the innovative brewhouse has now produced an entirely "Arizona-born" ale. Called Connection Saison, this beer features both malt and hops grown right here in the Grand Canyon State. The Belgian-style beer was made with a malt grown in the Verde Valley and hops harvested in Elgin, which have been brought to create a Farmhouse Saison ale.

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Wildlerness Brewing's Saison made with Sinagua Malt

National Geographic

Young Farmer Saves Water in Innovative Ways

Arizona farmer Zach Hauser says the Verde River "holds the key to our future around here. Without it there probably wouldn't be any farming here at all."

Hauser takes water seriously. Because his farm sits on dry land in central Arizona, Hauser relies on the Verde River, as do most residents of the small town of Camp Verde, about 90 miles (145 kilometers) north of Phoenix. His 600-acre family farm is one of the largest users of water in the area, and he treats conservation as a personal responsibility.

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