HVG Germany: Hopfen


Later on Hermann Schlicker, for decades the managing board member of the HVG Hallertau, once judged the task of the HVG in this first phase up until 1959 as being in a purely "price-supporting function". The year 1960 brought inasmuch a radical change as here the decision matured to gradually relinquish the commission business in favour of a stronger orientation towards contracted hops. For Schlicker this was synonymous with a final change by the HVG towards a leadership in compliance with "entrepreneurial aspects".
This changeover to the forward contracts system therefore not only for the hop-growers meant a considerable upheaval in the history of marketing hops. That the path chosen was the right one was reflected not least in the stable HVG membership and a simultaneous constant increase in the hop quantities marketed year for year. In 1966 the proportion of contractual hops was already around 90 %.
In 1968 the HVG took an important step with regard to market regulation. It participated in the Hopstabil GmbH, which operated a big facility for hop powder in Wolnzach under the same name. Consequently for the first time they could bring their own already fully mature hop product onto the market.
The year 1973 perhaps saw the most important milestone in the cooperative history. At the instigation of the Bavarian Ministry for Agriculture the HVG was constituted as a producer group In compliance with the EEC market regulation. This new status of the HVG not only made extensive changes to the statutes necessary which finally reached completion in 1978. Now for the first time all members of the producer group were entitled to apply for producer subsidies for measures relating to stabilising the hop market. The allocation of these subsidies were immediately the responsibility of the Hop Processing Cooperative. In practical hop-growing this once again meant considerable greater concentration on quality and the choice of hop varieties.
With the 1974 crop, in the end the HVG marketed more than 50,000 centners of hops. Meanwhile their position on the market was so strong that for the first time they began to extend their activities also to other hop-growing regions. Thus their commercial pursuit for the first time led to the Hersbruck hop-growing region where the cooperative there had already failed in 1966.