Horton Ridge Malt and Grain Company weeks away from first malt batch

A Nova Scotia farmer is getting into the malt business with ambitions of replicating the success of the province’s vineyards.

Alan Stewart says 'underdeveloped' industry could follow the success of province's vineyards

Alan Stewart, who also runs Stewart's Organic Farm, hopes to have the first malt batch ready in April. (CBC)

A Nova Scotia farmer is getting into the malt business with ambitions of replicating the success of the province's vineyards.

Horton Ridge Malt and Grain Company in Hortonville is almost complete and will soon produce organic malts for beer.

Alan Stewart also runs Stewart's Organic Farm and grows rye across from his new malt building.

"There's no malting grain being grown here at present, so therefore the industry is very underdeveloped," he says.

"It's a big job, but actually it's been very fun. We've had a good time with it."

Stewart designed the facility to handle 200 tons of grain per year, a small fraction of what Atlantic Canadian brewers use.

Angus Campbell from Good Robot Brewing Company says, "It's a great step."

He says having a Nova Scotian malt producer helps strengthen supply.

"We've been subject to poor weather in the northern [United] States and even some in Alberta at times and that impacts the malt supply," said Campbell.

Horton Ridge says there are a "malt-itude" of uses for malt, from beer to flour to the candy Maltesers. Stewart hopes the first batch will be ready in April.

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