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International Bitterness Units scale

The hoppy character of beer is measured by the International Bitterness Units scale, or IBU scale for short. An IBU is one part per million of isohumulone. The higher number, the greater the bitterness.

A light American lager might be as low as 5 on the IBU scale. At the other extreme, a barley wine can range up to 100. Other examples:

One formula craft brewers use to calculate IBU is

hop weight × AA% × utilization × volume × 1.34