You’ve maybe read it in a daily paper or seen it on the television news. The price of beer is going to increase because the price of malting barley is higher. Consumers are being advised to brace for the shock. Oh, the horror of it all. Let’s put this into a bit of perspective. Yes, malting barley supplies are low because of crop problems here in Western Canada and in Australia. The pooled price to growers for malting barley is dreadfully low in this crop year, but domestically and internationally malting companies are paying more and next crop year the price that Western Canadian farmers receive should be better. What the news stories fail to research is just how much the price of malting barley affects the price of beer. A bushel of barley typically produces about 300 bottles of beer. Here in Canada, where adjuncts are typically used, a bushel of barley produces more than 450 bottles of beer. The posted price for malting barley at Thunder Bay is currently around $7.50 a bushel. Do the math and there’s somewhere around 2 cents worth of barley in a bottle of beer. If beer prices rise, it’s more likely to be due to transportation or packaging costs. It takes a big change in the value of malting barley to make even a penny a bottle difference in the price of beer. I’m Kevin Hursh.