CO-HOP FAQ

The LEx CO-HOP is a cooperative of brewers leveraging data, technology and collective buying power to source future hop requirements, balance positions, and react to changing market conditions without signing traditional contracts, paying storage fees, or surprise bills from hop merchants.

CO-HOP Members Get:

  • Better prices
  • More flexibility
  • Advanced risk mitigation
  • Easy ordering & delivery
  • Dibs on excess inventory released by other members
  • Consistent, True-to-type aromas

What is CO-HOP?

CO-HOP is a new alternative to hop contracting, similar to a co-op. It’s a communal form of reserving & rebalancing future hop requirements. The collective buying power of many brewers offers a number of advantages from better pricing, to no storage fees, to easily transferring unneeded hops to other brewers. (woohoo no contracts!)

Can anyone join the CO-HOP?

No. CO-HOP access is invitation-only, based on your brewery's performance on The Exchange and other risk factors.

Sounds great - how does it work?

Visit My CO-HOPs and click the Get Started button to join an Open Enrollment & request 2022 hops in a few simple clicks. Your request is then pooled with other brewers (buying power) as we source hops from our partner merchants (the same brands you know & trust). Once we’ve secured offers for the group of brewers, we’ll send you the best offer, including all details (price, quantity, delivery info, brand and other packaging details). You are welcome to accept or reject our offer.

Does submitting a request for 2022 hops commit me to anything?

No - you are free to decline any offer.

Can I request multiple hop varieties?

Yes. You can select as many varieties as you’d like from the menu during a given enrollment period. Note: only a select group of varieties will be available during any given enrollment period.

I don’t see some of the varieties I want - does CO-HOP include all hop varieties?

Not yet. For the 2022 crop year we are only offering a select group of popular varieties. We hope to expand the number of varieties offered in the future.

Are there any minimum or maximum quantities?

No - you can reserve one box or multiple pallets of hops.

Can I request specialty hop products, whole leaf, T45s, etc?

No. Currently, we are only offering T90 pellets.

What happens after I accept an offer?

Accepting our offer reserves your 2022 hops. Once your hops are harvested, we will communicate processing & availability timelines from the merchant(s). Once the hops are available for shipment, you’ll place & pay for orders via a process similar to The Lupulin Exchange checkout process you’re already familiar with.

What if I decide I don’t want some of my reserved hops?

If you end up not needing some of the hops you’ve reserved, you can release them back to other CO-HOP members, even after the 2022 harvest. The sooner you release hops you don't need, the less it will hurt your score & future offers.

It seems like there’s no risk - shouldn’t I just reserve more than I need?

You could, but that would be short-sighted. We recommend only reserving a portion (ie 80%) of your expected need. While releasing reserved hops has no immediate financial penalty, your performance ratio of hops released:reserved, will affect your access to future enrollments, as well as the quantity and/or price of your future offers.

Are there any membership fees or costs of any kind?

No. The offer price you accept is the exact price per pound you will pay when you take delivery of your hops. There are no membership fees, storage fees, transfer fees (to other brewers) or other fees of any kind.

What about Shipping?

You’ll choose & pay for shipping using the same streamlined checkout you’ve come to expect from The Lupulin Exchange, which leverages our volume discounts to get the best rates.

How long till I receive an offer?

You can expect to receive an offer within 2 weeks of the end of an enrollment window, and you’ll have about 1 week to accept or reject our offer.

Can I negotiate my offer?

No. Offers can only be accepted or rejected.

Can I join the CO-HOP anytime?

No. Timing is everything. You will receive an email whenever an enrollment window opens. We anticipate offering different varieties during each enrollment window. The first enrollment window will be Sep 9-20, 2021 and is limited to southern hemisphere varieties only. The second enrollment window, which will include varieties from the pacific northwest, opens in October 2021. You can view enrollments at anytime by visiting My CO-HOPs

Can I join more than one enrollment window?

Yes. You can join as many open enrollments as you’d like.

Can I select my lots?

As long as minimum volumes are met, lots will be selected by a small team led by John Bryce (if you’ll be in Yakima during selection and want to be part of the team, let us know). Our approach isn't to find a magical, one-off "unicorn" lot of any given variety but to create a high-quality blend across multiple lots that will produce consistent, high-quality, true-to-type flavors & aromas. This is a major advantage for small breweries that don't contract enough to qualify for selection or simply can't make the trip. Being a CO-HOP member means we've always got your back and you never get the leftover lots that everyone else rejected.

What if the hops I receive don’t meet my quality specs?

All hops ship directly from the hop merchant to you. We only source from brands you know & trust, but we obviously aren’t in a position to make quality guarantees. You will approve the brand/supplier when you accept an offer. We definitely want to know if you experience any quality issues (and will coordinate with other members of the CO-HOP who received the same lot), but you’ll need to deal directly with the supplier to remedy any quality issues, just as you would when signing a traditional hop contract.

Am I guaranteed the amount I reserved?

Mostly, but not 100%. As with traditional contracting, there are some things out of our control (ie weather, natural disasters, etc.). You’re just as likely to get your reserved quantities vs. signing a traditional contract. That said, there are scenarios in which we reserve the right to reallocate your reserved quantities. For example, if you go dark (stop responding to our messages and/or stop logging-in), provide false information to us, violate our terms of use, or your overall score drops because you get a bunch of bad ratings, etc. In those scenarios, we’ll send you plenty of warnings and usually give you one last opportunity to take immediate delivery before we release the hops to other members of the CO-HOP. In the unlikely event of a shortage beyond our control (ie natural disaster), we will work with merchants to explore all possible solutions, survey members for volunteer releases and then announce a fair and uniform resolution (for example cutting all reservations by an equal amount).

If my reserved hops are shipping from a vendor that I already work with, can I bundle shipments?

No. All reserved hops will ship via prepaid shipping labels based on the storage location.

Is there a credit check?

No. However, the CO-HOP is currently only available to a select group of Lupulin Exchange community members with shiny track records (you should be flattered).

Can I pay by check?

No. We only accept payment by credit card or ACH.

Do I need to pay for all the hops we reserved at once?

No. You are able to take delivery of portions of your reservation (as little as one box at a time) via the same checkout process you've used with other Lupulin Exchange orders

How long do I have to take delivery of the 2022 crop year hops?

Members can order or release any amount of their reserved hops after harvest & processing with just a few clicks, using our streamlined checkout process. To keep the supply of hops in balance, CO-HOP members must either order or release minimum quantities based on the schedules below. Our system will check-in regularly during delivery windows to give you the following options:

  • Order (checkout) some of your reserved hops
  • Release some of your reserved hops to other CO-HOP members
  • “Snooze” a min order deadline (some fees & limitations may apply)

Date Schedule for NZ varieties
Mar 2022 Harvest begins
Apr 2022 Harvest ends, growers get paid
May 2022 Pelletizing
Jun 2022 Pelletizing/export
Jul 2022 Export/on water
Aug 2022 On water/customs
9/15/22 1st min order deadline
10/15/22 2nd min order deadline
11/15/22 3rd min order deadline
12/15/22 4th min order deadline
Date Schedule for PNW varieties
Sep 2022 Harvest, growers get paid
Oct 2022 Pelletizing
11/15/22 Pelletizing / 1st min order deadline *
12/15/22 Pelletizing / 2nd min order deadline *
1/15/23 Pelletizing / 3rd min order deadline *
2/15/23 4th min order deadline
3/15/23 5th min order deadline
4/15/23 6th min order deadline
5/15/23 7th min order deadline
6/15/23 8th min order deadline

* Not required to take delivery if hops are not available (have not been pelletized yet)

How it Works:

  • All shipments will be in 4x11 lbs packs (unless your reservation < 44 lbs)
  • If you reserved 44 lbs or less, you must order/release by the 1st min order deadline
  • Reservations > 44 lbs will be spread across all delivery windows/deadlines
  • Acting prior to deadlines always improves your score & future offers

Example 1: Reservation for 44 lbs 2022 NZ Waimea:

  • Must order/release/snooze 1 box (44 lbs) by 9/15/22

Example 2: Reservation for 132 lbs of 2022 NZ Rakau:

  • Must order/release/snooze 1st box (44 lbs) by 9/15/22
  • Must order/release/snooze 2nd box (44 lbs) by 10/15/22
  • Must order/release/snooze 3rd box (44 lbs) by 11/15/22

Example 3: Reservation for 220 lbs NZ Taiheke:

  • Must order/release/snooze 1st & 2nd boxes (88 lbs) by 9/15/22
  • Must order/release/snooze 3rd box (44 lbs) by 10/15/22
  • Must order/release/snooze 4th box (44 lbs) by 11/15/22
  • Must order/release/snooze 5th box (44 lbs) by 12/15/22

Questions?

Please reach out with any questions!