The Brewing Network interviewed Ralph Olsen of HopUnion and Ian Ward of the Brewers Supply group on 12/02/07.
The current status of the shortages for Hop and Malt was covered in great detail. If you are interested in knowing what is going on you can download the show in MP3 format from the website on the BN Archive page. Just search for the 12/02/07 show.
I found the show very informative and useful for future planning and you are getting the information directly from two guys most involved with the supply situation.
I still have some EKG and Cascade Pellets in my freezer to hopefully last me through a few sessions next year. (I’d be happy to sell you some for $400 an ounce) But I look forward to trying some newer varieties of hops while the old standards are hard to find. I am particularly interested in looking for some Palisades in the future.
As for malt prices, I think I am going to just have to eat the cost increase. Or try and find some clubs that do bulk purchasing and get in on that to save some money.
I know some homebrewers get friendly with their local brewpub and buy a sack from the brewers large pallet bulk orders. This can give significant savings. Unfortunately, my most local pub has closed/moved… very sad.