2008 crop. 16.6% Avg. Alpha. New Zealand is an excellent place to grow organic hops because none of the usual hop diseases and pests such as downy mildew. One of the methods employed by New Zealand organic hop farmers to reduce pest damage is to send sheep into the hop row to defoliate the lower branches. This also provides a source of fertilizer for the plants. Pacific Gem is a very high alpha hop with a pleasant citrus aroma good for bitters and dark beers. Some brewers have reported that Pacific Gem provides a subtle "blackberry" flavor/taste, which is a popular characteristic for English bitters and stouts.