Current interest in the nutritional value of ancient grains like quinoa and chia has been the driver of an increase in their consumption.
Grain growers in the New South Wales Riverina recognised the popularity of ancient grains and aimed to diversify their crops by including an ancient grain called teff. Teff is a gluten-free whole grain with a higher fibre content than wheat and rice. It is the world’s smallest grain, and it originates from Ethiopia where its main use is in Injera bread.
With assistance from the CSIRO, Outback Harvest changed its focus from growing traditional grains (barley, corn, rice & wheat) to teff which has a growing season between December and March, allowing them to plant two varieties of the ancient grain, brown and ivory.
In conjunction with the CSIRO and using brown and ivory teff varieties Outback Harvest developed prototype muffins, bread, and dry cake mixes. These products are currently being commercialised with part of the company’s operations relocating to Melbourne to coordinate packaging, marketing and distribution of retail products.
Future plans include the introduction of new products to the retail and wholesale markets, with potential for exporting to Asia.
Original story: Prepared Food – October 2017, page 17