“Develop new varieties and new treatment processes of hops for the brewing industry”.


  • Montes de Cristal y Acero Company: Grows and commercialises hops.
  • Research bodies: Agrarian Production Department at the UPNA and the National Centre for Food Technology and Safety (CNTA).

This consortium also has a collaborating brewing company, La Zaragozana S.A., which contributes its knowledge and materials to execute the project.

Hops (Humulus lupulus), a domesticated climbing plant grown since the Middle Ages, is one of the main ingredients in beer. It has various properties, aside from giving the drink its bitter taste, balancing the sweetness of the malt, and its antiseptic properties, it contributes to the formation and retention of the foam.

Critical points:

  • Quality of the hops: Depends on the plant variety used and the cultivation practices employed. Only two varieties are cultivated predominantly in Spain..
  • Use in the brewing industry: The most common way of introducing hops is to do so during the boiling state of the beer wort. This achieves the bitterness, but at this temperature many of the hops’ aromas are lost.

Therefore, this project aims to::

  • Obtain new commercial varieties of hops based on the selection and domestication of wild varieties currently growing in Navarre.
  • Develop a new hops treatment process based on high voltage pulsed current technology, which enables all the sensory components (bitterness and aromas) of the hops to be extracted and added to the beer.




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