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About Us

The OHGA is a not-for-profit association of hop growers, families and enthusiasts who are interested in supporting the growth of the hop industry in Ontario.

Our mission is to support the development of the hop industry in this province by:

  • Acting as a central voice for hop growers in Ontario;
  • Be an advocacy group for commercial growers in the province to to both brewing and government interests;
  • Promote hop-growing fundamentals through education, research and development;
  • Support the promotion and marketing of high quality eastern hops

2016-17 Board of Directors


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Hugh Brown

Hugh BrownPresident

Hugh is a graduate of the Broadcast Journalism program at Fanshawe College and has many years experience in the media industry as a broadcaster, journalist, editor and digital project manager. Hugh, was born and raised on a family dairy farm in the Ottawa area and is co-owner of Heritage Hill Organics Hopyard & Nursery near Barrie, Ontario. He has been growing hops naturally for 13 years and selling his product commercially for last eight.

Hugh currently has two hop yards (named Upper & Lower Canada) totalling 1,200+ plants. Over the last 4-5 years, Hugh has: researched the viability of hops as a commercial crop, documented hop yard yields and sold rootstock across Canada.

Hugh, a founding member of the OHGA, is very enthusiastic about reviving hops as a commercially grown crop in Ontario.

To contact Hugh, email: president@ohga.ca


Albert Witteveen

Albert Witteveen

Albert Witteveen – Vice President

Albert Witteveen is owner of Upper Twenty Creek Farm in South Grimsby, Ontario and brings with him a dearth of experience as long-time board member of the West Niagara Agricultural Society.

Albert has been chairman of the Niagara North Federation of Ag for the last 20 yrs, and has been involved in committees such as tree bylaw, waste management, Agriculture task force, Niagara Conservation, Ag sub committee, Chairman of the citizen liaison committee for the regional road 12 landfill for 25 yrs, Poultryfest committee for 11 yrs, as director on the executive.

Albert also served as a Municipal councillor from 2000-2006, chairing planning committee.

He was a poultry farmer from 1988-2009, and employed as a purchaser for a feed mill for three years, where presently he is a Merchandiser for Furst McNess.

This is Albert’s first year on the OHGA executive

To contact Albert email: vp@ohga.ca


Fred Thomson

Fred Thomson

Fred Thomson – Secretary Treasurer/Membership

Fred is a partner on Lot 17 Hop Yard in Campbellford, ON and has many years experience working with the Ontario crop insurance program. Fred was born and raised on a family farm that has remained in his family since 1854. He graduated from the University of Guelph with a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture in 1971.

Since that time, he has worked in the Federal and Ontario provincial governments for just over 40 years. Since 1979, he has devoted his spare time to the family farm, crop production, and the operation of a family seed cleaning business. In 2011, he and his son Adam became interested in hop production and established a small yard which has become known as Lot 17 .

Fred retired in 2012 from his job as Agricorp Regional Manager and now devotes his attention to the farm operation, along with golf in summer and curling in winter. This is Fred’s first year on the OHGA executive.

To contact Fred email: treasurer@ohga.ca


Don Wilford

Don Wilford

Don Wilford – Director

My wife (Geraldine or Gerry) and I moved to the County (Prince Edward that is), full time, in 2013 – to our, ’til then, “weekend retreat”, an old farmhouse with 50 acres, formerly a dairy farm. I’d spent my career in the GTA and if you’d told me 20, even 10, years ago I’d be growing hops in my retirement, I’d have laughed. I knew nothing about agriculture.

But the County is a special place. Many come to retire and it often seems to spawn new hobbies and interests. For many, it meant growing grapes and making wine. I loved the stories, Geoff Heinricks’ beautifully written, “A Fool and 40 Acres” was my introduction. It wasn’t for me though. At least, I thought not, until, one day, a young forester acquaintance, Patrick, mentioned hops. I felt an immediate resonance and the rest is history. And, as is often the case, so many things seemed to almost magically fall into place I often wonder whether hops had chosen me rather than the other way round. Anyway, I’m now an aspiring hop farmer with 2/3 of an acre and 800 plants (I should mention “I” includes my partners, Brian Adams, Patrick Howe, Gerry and our five children). It’s been great fun and I’m proud to be doing something “local” with, at least, a small corner of our land.

In previous lives, I’ve been a Ph.D. scientist, engineering manager, business professional and Managing Director of Ontario’s Centre for Photonics. And I’m currently a founding partner of First Stone Venture Partners, in Picton, where we invest in start-ups and help entrepreneurs build sustainable, local businesses.

I believe in my children’s lifetimes our world will move from a GDP growth-based economy to one that is sustainable. Growing local hops for craft beers and helping start new, local businesses aren’t, in and of themselves, going to change the world. But they’re a good place to start.

This is Don’s first year on the OHGA executive

To contact Don, email: don.wilford@ohga.ca



Michael Duggan

Michael Duggan – Director

Long-time supporter of the Ontario hop scene – Michael Duggan is owner of Duggan’s Brewery, Parkdale,  1346 Queen St W, Toronto.

Duggan brings a wealth of brewing experience to OHGA and now has an acre of hops on property he leases north of the Toronto. Duggan’s impressive brewing resume includes the following:

  • Founder/brewmaster/President of Mill St Brewery
  • Founder/brewmaster/President of Duggan‘s Brewery
  • Consulting Brewmaster for Cuba
  • Past Brewmaster of:
    • Dominion Brewery
    • Hogtown Brewery
    • Robert Simpson Brewery/The Flying Monkeys Brewery
    • Cool Beer Brewery
    • Corning Brewery (NY)
    • Modern Brewer (Boston)

To contact Michael email: michael.duggan@ohga.ca


Lynn_McIntyreLynn McIntyre – Director

Lynn McIntyre studied Geology at McGill University and graduated from the University of Guelph in Geomorphology. Over the past 25 years he has gained extensive knowledge in the not-for-profit sector having established and served on charitable, not-for-profit and profit organizations, the most recent as past Chair of the Perth and District Community Food Centre.

Lynn and his wife own a 150 acre heritage farm just outside of Perth, ON and have embarked on their next venture to produce high quality hops for the local breweries.

To Contact Lynn email: lynn.mcintyre@ohga.ca

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