An interesting Fact About Grain:
WHAT ARE GRAINS?
HOW MANY GRAINS DO WE PRODUCE?
Complex Carbohydrate — Wheat flour is a good source of complex carbohydrate, the most efficient source of energy available to the human body.
Fiber — Fiber is the indigestible carbohydrate in food which acts like a broom to sweep our the digestive tract. One slice of whole wheat bread contains 1.5 grams of dietary fiber; one slice of white bread contains 0.5 grams.
Wheat foods are moderate sources of incomplete protein. This means that while wheat and other cereal grains may contain all eight of the amino acids necessary for good health, not all eight are found at adequate levels. However, combining wheat or other cereal grains with animal proteins or legumes makes the grain protein complete. Within the cereal group, wheat contains more protein than rice or corn.
Fats account for 2 to 23 percent of wheat foods, although wheat alone contains very little fat. Most often, the fat content in wheat foods results from fat added in production, such as the oil or shortening found in many baked or fried wheat foods. Bread and pasta products are low-fat foods because the by weight, is wheat flour.
Other Vitamins And Minerals
Thiamine — One of the essential B-vitamins needed daily for good appetite, digestion and healthy nerves. Wheat foods are a good source of thiamine.
Niacin — A B-vitamin essential for the efficient use of protein by the body. Wheat foods are a good source of niacin.
Iron — Vital to nutritional. Wheat foods are a reliable source of iron for normal dietary needs.
Zinc — Important for skin healing and growth properties. Wheat foods are a good source of zinc.
Riboflavin — Essential for growth and good vision. Wheat foods are a fair source of riboflavin.
Trace Minerals — Wheat foods are a good source of selenium and magnesium, nutrients essential to good health.
All-purpose flour is the finely ground endosperm of the wheat kernel separated from the bran and germ during the milling process. All-purpose flour is made from hard wheat’s or a combination of soft and hard wheat from which the home baker can make a complete range of satisfactory baked products such as yeast breads, cakes, cookies, pastries and noodles.
Enriched All-purpose Flour has iron and B-vitamins added in amounts equal to or exceeding that of whole wheat flour.
Bleached Enriched All-purpose Flour is treated with chlorine to mature the flour, condition the gluten and improve the baking quality. The chlorine evaporates and does not destroy the nutrients but does reduce the risk of spoilage or contamination.
Unbleached Enriched All-purpose Flour is bleached by oxygen in the air during an aging process and is off-white in color. Nutritionally, bleached and unbleached flour are the same.
Bread flour, from the endosperm of the wheat kernel, is milled primarily for commercial bakers but is also available at retail outlets. Although similar to all-purpose flour, it has a greater gluten strength and generally is used for yeast breads.
Self-rising flour is an all-purpose flour with salt and leavening added. One cup of self-rising flour contains 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Self-rising flour can be substituted for all-purpose flour in a recipe by reducing salt and baking powder according to those proportions.
Whole Wheat Flour
Whole wheat flour is a course-textured flour ground from the entire wheat kernel and thus contains the bran, germ and endosperm. The presence of bran reduces gluten development. Baked products made from whole wheat flour tend to be heavier and denser than those made from white flour.
Cake Flour – Milled from soft wheat. Especially suitable for cakes, cookies, crackers and pastries. Low in protein and gluten.
Pastry Flour – Milled from a soft, low gluten wheat. Comparable in protein but lower in starch than cake flour.
Gluten Flour – Used by bakers in combination with flours having a low protein content because it improves the baking quality and produces gluten bread of high protein content.
Semolina– Coarsely ground endosperm of durum wheat. High in protein. Used in high quality pasta products.
Durum Flour – Byproduct of semolina production. Used to make commercial noodles.
Farina – Coarsely ground endosperm of hard wheat’s. Prime ingredient in many breakfast cereals. Also used in the production of inexpensive pasta.
The wheat kernel, sometimes called the wheat berry, is the seed from which the wheat plant grows. Each tiny seed contains three distinct parts that are separated during the milling process to produce flour. The kernel of wheat is a storehouse of nutrients essential to the human diet.
..About 83 percent of the kernel weight. It is the source of white flour. The endosperm contains the greatest share of the protein in the whole kernel, carbohydrates, iron as well as many B-complex vitamins, such as riboflavin, niacin, and thiamine.
..About 14 1/2 percent of the kernel weight. Bran is included in whole wheat flour and is also available separately. Of the nutrients in whole wheat, the bran contains a small amount of protein, larger quantities of the B-complex vitamins listed above, trace minerals, and indigestible cellulose material also called dietary flour.
..About 2 1/2 percent of the kernel weight. The germ is the embryo or sprouting section of the seed, usually separated because of the fat that limits the keeping quality of flour. Of the nutrients in whole wheat, the germ contains minimal quantities of protein, but a greater share of B-complex vitamins and trace minerals. Wheat germ can be purchased separately and is included in whole wheat flour.
NUTRIENT COMPARISON OF SELECTED WHEAT FOODS
*100 Grams Edible Portion
*100 gram equal 3.5 ounces
HOW ARE GRAINS PRODUCED?
Before planting a crop, farmers prepare their fields for seeding. This may entail cultivating the soil, usually applying fertilizers and then seeding the crop using a seed drill. If required, herbicides for weed control are used.
When the crop ripens, it is harvested. Wheat, for example, is ready to be harvested when it is about 1m high and the color changes from green to golden and the grain is around 15 percent mousture. A head of wheat contains 30 to 65 kernels of grain. A combine is used to separate the seeds from the chaff and straw. Harvested grain is stored in granaries and may require drying or cooling to do so safely. It is important to maintain specific moisture levels and temperatures in grain to ensure that it does not become mouldy.
WHAT HAPPENS AFTER THE GRAINS LEAVE THE FARM?
Wheat and barley are exported. Feed growers have a number of different marketing channels.
Most of the wheat eaten by people is milled, which means it is ground into flour. The process of milling involves cleaning the wheat and removing all foreign materials. The wheat is then conditioned by adding moisture so that the bran can be removed easily. Finally, the grain is milled by passing it through large rollers to grind the wheat. For white flour the bran is sifted out. Because the bran contains many nutrients, when it is removed flour loses much of its nutritive value. In UK the enrichment of white flour by replacing these nutrients has been required by law. In the last few years, an increasing amount of wheat is milled into whole wheat flour rather than white. Barley and oats are usually processed into animal feed. Barley is also malted for use in beer making.
WHAT DOES GRAIN LOOK LIKE WHEN I USE IT?
Grains are also used for animal feed. There are feed mills throughout UK that make livestock feed. Many livestock farmers also mill their own feed.
Grains are a good source of carbohydrates and protein for us and for other animals. In wheat, the endosperm contains starch, the bran contain minerals and vitamins, and the embryo contains protein, fat and vitamins.
WHAT CHALLENGES DOES THE GRAIN PRODUCER FACE?
WHO’S INVOLVED IN PRODUCING GRAIN?