Recently, I tried to find American Cascade hops from my local homebrew supply store and I couldn’t find any. I was lucky to get Cascade hops from Argentina. The last time I was able to get good domestic Cascade hops, they had an Alpha (bitterness) value of 6.9. The Cascade hops from Argentina that I was able to buy recently only had an Alpha units value of 3.2. I asked the store owner about it and he said there was a worldwide shortage of hops and I wouldn’t be able to get any domestic Cascade hops for another 2 years.
I checked into this and found out that there is a shortage of not only hops but also malted barley. That explained the rise in price I had to pay for bulk malt extract. You can read more on this story at the OregonLive.com blog: Hops, Barley supply tightens and your pint will get pricier