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When Homebrewers Go Big: The Case for Buying in Bulk

Still buying only what you need for that next batch? Josh Weikert makes the case for building a library of ingredients, where it’s not just about quality, it’s about quantity.

Josh Weikert Apr 2, 2021 - 5 min read

When Homebrewers Go Big: The Case for Buying in Bulk Primary Image

Photo: Jamie Bogner

It’s rare in any endeavor that cost, convenience, and creativity are all serviced by the same improvement. In the case of homebrewing, that’s exactly what comes from buying your ingredients in bulk and becoming your own private homebrew supplier.

We don’t brew to save money, I know. But buying in bulk can knock your costs back by as much as half. Check the prices at a major national retailer for something like a simple pale malt: You’ll save more than 40 percent buying by the sack instead of by the pound. Likewise, hops drop in price by about half when buying by the pound instead of by the ounce. Then there’s yeast ... Well, I don’t recommend stockpiling liquid yeast—but it doesn’t hurt to have several varieties of longer-lasting dried yeast handy, just in case.

That’s all before we consider the occasional sale price or deal; it’s not that hard to find a pound of all-purpose bittering hops for $5 or a sack of leftover grain (with a shelf life measured in years) for $45.

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