T-90 hop pellets are the final product of whole leaf hops that have been processed through a series of size reduction and densification steps. First, the whole bale is carefully decompressed using a ‘bale-breaker’. The resulting loose leaf hops is sent to a hammer mill, which grinds the whole leaf hops into a powder that retains all of its natural vegetative and lupulin ingredients. Then, the powder is mixed equally in a large mixer and pressed through a pellet die (4mm-6mm diameter). After being pelletized, the product passes through a pellet shaker, which separates the usable pellets from hop dust and broken pellets, which are recycled in the system. The pellets are subsequently sent through a cooling tank that rapidly refrigerates the pellets to maintain optimum product integrity. Pellets have the advantage of compact storagability and significantly increased shelf life due to nitrogen-flushed packaging and a smaller surface area that can be oxidized. More importantly, there is close to a 15% increase in alpha acid utilization compared to whole leaf in the boil. For these reasons, T-90 hop pellets are increasingly popular within the craft brewing industry.