What is the difference between winter barley and spring barley?
The main difference between winter and spring barley is when they are sown. So, winter barley is sown in the winter and the spring barley is sown in the spring. But there is also a difference in terms of spirit yield.
Spring barleys traditionally will give you more spirit at the end of the day per tonne of malt. As for harvesting, they are both harvested in autumn, although the winter is a couple of weeks earlier compared to the spring.
Winter barley is mainly used as cattle feed. But it can also be used in the brewing industry to make beer.
Spring barley is far more popular in the Scotch whisky industry as it generates a higher spirit yield. So you get more spirit per tonne of malt used.