Spotted Lanternfly Potential Damage to the Pennsylvania Craft Beer Industry

Authors: DeAnn Willsey*, Temple University
Topics: Cartography, Agricultural Geography, Wine, Beer, and Spirits
Keywords: GIS, map, cartography, beer, biogeography
Session Type: Virtual Poster
Day: 4/8/2021
Start / End Time: 11:10 AM / 12:25 PM
Room: Virtual 51
Presentation File: Download



The swarming nature of the spotted lanternfly, an invasive insect first found in Berks County, PA, caused concern for researchers as they learned of its voracious appetite for 70 different species of plants, many of which are valuable PA crops. In 2020, the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture reported a near 500 percent increase in spotted lanternflies and a spread of infestations reaching across PA (Schneck, 2020). Sightings of live specimens have been found as far north as Massachusetts and as far south as North Carolina, and in all neighboring states of PA. In the Northeast region of the United States, PA is the largest producer of barley (Gruber, 2017), which is used in beer as well as other food products and as feed for cattle. In 2018, Governor Tom Wolf approved almost $800k in grants to develop the craft beer industry within the state, including growing its own local hops (Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board, 2018). The map demonstrates that the infestations surround the largest acreages of hops and barley crops in the state, and are located in areas where the highest concentrations of breweries currently exist. This could cause increasing damage to the PA agricultural industry and local beer production.

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