Barley was first cultivated in western Asia at least 9,000 years ago and is now an annual grass of temperate regions too. Its important grain is used in the brewing of beer (malting barley). Grain not used in this process is used to feed livestock and at the end of March - beginning of April, barley is reaped in abundance for this purpose throughout Greece.
The six-row barley and the two-row barley are the most commonly cultivated species and are grown in a wide range of areas, worldwide.
Europe is the largest producer and like wheat, barley can be sown in these temperate countries in the autumn or the spring.