Whereas most grains are planted and harvested annually, Kernza stays in the ground year after year, developing roots up to 12 feet long. Perennial crops like Kernza are beneficial to the environment; they protect soil from erosion and improve soil structure. They increase ecosystem nutrient retention, carbon sequestration, and can contribute to climate change adaptation and mitigation. And in the case of Kernza, they lend a unique nutty flavor. The Patagonia Provisions and Dogfish Head collaborative launch of Kernza Pils marks an important milestone in scaling Kernza.
Kernza Pils (5.0% ABV) is an earthy, aromatic pilsner brewed with organic malted barley, organic Contessa hops (a newly organic certified hop variety), and of course, Kernza perennial grain. The melodic interplay of the Kernza and Contessa hops provides the beer with its distinct flavor profile; the Kernza adds a subtle, spicy warmth to the beer, while the organic Contessa hops, with notes of pear and green tea, give it a bright, floral character.
"We create each of our products with a solutions-based mindset, discovering and incorporating ingredients that help to solve the environmental crisis," says, co-founder and head of Patagonia Provisions. "Together with Dogfish Head, we're able to spotlight the important and pioneering work of The Land Institute. By creating market pull for a regenerative crop like Kernza perennial grain, we hope to incentivize farmers and brewers to shift in this direction and to further our commitment to being in business to save our home planet."
The launch of Kernza Pils represents the collective action of Patagonia Provisions and Dogfish Head taking steps towards scaling regenerative crops to inspire change in the brewing industry. Patagonia Provisions believes the future of farming, and our planet, lies in regenerative and organic agriculture – a practice that restores soil biodiversity, sequesters carbon and grows crops without chemical fertilizers or pesticides. Similarly, Dogfish Head is committed to continuing to amplify its use of regenerative and organically-grown brewing ingredients.