Bread & Grain Trends

Insights, Innovation and Market News

Companies

Vegetable-Based RightRice Debuts At Whole Foods Markets

Popchips founder Keith Belling has introduced a vegetable rice made with lentils, chickpeas, green peas, and rice. San Francisco-based RightRice is a shelf-stable blend of more than 90 percent vegetables comprising 10 g of complete protein and five grams of fiber per serving, but has 40 percent fewer net carbs than traditional white rice. RightRice, available in original and three savory flavors, cooks like rice in about 10 minutes.  Each flavor comes in a seven-oz. pouch (about four servings) at a suggested retail of $3.99, and is non-GMO, vegan, kosher and gluten-free. RightRice is available at Whole Foods Markets nationally and online at Amazon.[Image Credit: © BFI]

French Bakery Chain Opens Locations In N.Y. Area



French bakery and café chain Marie Blachère is setting up shop this month in the Long Island village of Great Neck, N.Y., and next month in Greenwich Village (Manhattan). The 35-year-old chain, with more than 500 locations in France, is known for its baguettes, but also sells croissants, brioches, fruit tarts, and – especially for Americans – muffins, doughnuts, sandwiches, and pizza. [Image Credit: © Boulangerie Marie Blachère]

Generation Z Ideal Is Fast, Healthful, Eating

Market researcher Packaged Facts says today's 18- to 24-year-old adults (Generation Z) are more likely than their Millennial predecessors to say they often snack between meals (74 percent vs. 66 percent) and, when cooking at home, are much more likely to prefer simple, easy-to-prepare meals (58 percent vs. 40 percent). Households headed by adults under age 25 are 29 percent more likely to eat shelf-to-microwave dinners and 26 percent more likely to eat frozen breakfast entrees/sandwiches.  They are also 23 percent more likely to eat frozen (complete) TV dinners and are 10 percent more likely to eat dry packaged dinners, dinner mixes, and kits. "Therefore,” a company exec says, “there's exists ample opportunity for food marketers of frozen prepared meals, canned soups, potato chips, and other canned and packaged prepared food such as salads and desserts, to convert adults under the age of 25 into loyal lifelong customers."[Image Credit: © John R Perry from Pixabay]

Two Bakers Share A Love For Artisan Bread – And A Simple Business Plan

Two baking entrepreneurs who share a love of sourdough bread have joined forces in Green Bay, Wisc., to make their artisan loaves in the kitchen of a parish school, sell it on the Internet, and deliver it to customers. They take over the kitchen, with its two ovens and large wooden work counter, after the schoolkids have been fed their lunches. The experienced online businessmen knew they had a good thing going, and they knew how to market it without much overhead cost. Customers order bread on the company website and the two bakers deliver it right to homes and retail businesses. The first week Voyageurs Sourdough had four orders, but they are now averaging 50 a week. The 28-ounce loaves sell for $10 each. [Image Credit: © Pain de la Baie Verte]

Panera’s Nine-Year Experiment In Feeding The Hungry Comes To A Close


The last location of Panera Cares, Panera Bread’s pay-what-you-can non-profit experiment, has closed its doors. The St. Louis, Mo.-based company acknowledged that the concept launched nine years ago in Clayton, Mo., – and since then in other cities around the U.S. – is “no longer viable.” The community cafes posted a suggested donation for customers whose payment would cover the free food given to those unable to pay. The cafes were also supposed to raise awareness of hunger issues in America. The last Panera Cares café was in Boston.[Image Credit: © Panera Bread]

N.C. Bagel Bakery Takes A Fresh Look At An Old Tradition

A bagel bakery in North Carolina is doing its best to shatter the myth that the only good bagels in the world come from the boroughs of New York or from Montreal. The owners of Benchwarmers Bagels are “asking people to try something new,” something that emerged from the joint efforts of a stone mill bakery that provides fresh milled grain and flour, and a craft coffee bar. Benchwarmers boils its bagels in a vat of honey-water before sliding them into a wood-burning oven on long wooden planks. They mix favorites like sesame, poppyseed and everything, with za'atar and sea salt and a Southern-inspired grits bagel. Their bagel sandwich fillings include duck rillette with sour cherries, house-cured lox with deviled eggs spread, and fried bologna with yellow mustard and an egg. The owners say they respect the bagel traditions, but new takes are long overdue. [Image Credit: © Benchwarmers Bagels and Coffee]

International Bakeries Set Up Shop In New York City


New York City is not known for being light on homegrown bakeries, but in recent years the Big Apple has attracted an array of international bakers. Among those who have set up shop are bakery chains like Maison Kayser from France, Le Pain Quotidien from Belgium, Breads Bakery from Israel, and a few from Japan and Korea. Now a fresh wave of foreign-born bakeries is arriving from Australia, Italy, and Scandinavia. Among them: Ole & Steen, a chain of more than 90 bakeries and cafes in Denmark and England; Fabrique, which has 19 bakeries in and around Stockholm and five in London; Bourke Street Bakery, launched in 2004 in Sydney, Australia, and specializing in sourdough breads; and Princi, a Milan bakery that is ensconced in a Starbucks Reserve Roastery.[Image Credit: © Eric Kayser]

Dave’s Killer Bread Launches First Two English Muffin Products


Dave's Killer Bread (DKB) of Milwaukie, Ore., is entering the breakfast foods arena with the launch of two varieties of English muffins: Killer Classic and Rockin’ Grains. According to  a DKB brand manager, the muffins meet the needs of consumers who are increasingly eating breakfast all day including snack times, lunch, and dinner. The classic version contains 6 g of protein and 8 g of whole grains per muffin, plus five other grains: quinoa, spelt, rye, millet, and barley. The Rockin' Grains variant is made with flax, sunflower, sesame, millet, and quinoa, 20 g of whole grains altogether.[Image Credit: © Dave's Killer Bread]

AHA Puts In A Good Word For – Whole Grain – Bread

The American Heart Association has come to the defense of bread, the human diet staple that has been vilified for years because of its carbs, sodium and gluten content. The AHA is sticking up for bread, the whole grain kind anyway, because it is a good source of nutrients that help maintain a healthy immune system. It also provides dietary fiber that can help improve cholesterol levels and lower the risk of heart disease, stroke, obesity, and Type 2 diabetes. The AHA warns that breads made from refined grains can lead to a surplus of bloodstream sugar, which is stored as fat. Watch out for white bread, French bread, bagels, and pizza crust. And, unless you have celiac disease or are sensitive to gluten, be cautious of gluten-free baked goods. "The gluten craze is something to be wary about," says a nutritionist. "Baked gluten-free foods often do not have optimal nutrient value."[Image Credit: © PhotoMIX-Company @ Pixabay]

Market News

Could A West African Grain Become The New Quinoa?

A Senegalese farmer who raises a small, nutty grain known as fonio believes it could someday become a staple across Africa and eventually around the world. A Senegalese chef in New York City also believes fonio has a bright future. Pierre Thiam is on a mission to raise fonio's profile at home and abroad, believing it can generate much-needed income for West African farmers, though they struggle to make money from it now. Cultivated in Senegal, Ghana, Mali, and other parts of the sub-Saharan region, fonio – dubbed "the new quinoa" – is gluten-free, high in protein and amino acids, and easy to cook. The drought-resistant, fast-growing plant also has the potential to help ease hunger linked to the negative impacts of climate change.[Image Credit: © Yolélé Foods Inc]

Bagels Can Round Out The In-Store Bakery Business

Bakeries in supermarkets that offer bagels in different sizes and flavors can become “a destination” for shoppers. Although plain bagels are always fine, the more variety the better. A market in Dayton, Ohio, for example, bakes 16 different varieties of bagels from scratch each day, along with standard flavors like plain, sesame and poppy, the in-store bakery has succeeded with blueberry-cinnamon crunch. Another in-store bakery is known for its unique seasonal bagels, like the gingerbread bagel, made with flour, brown sugar, ginger, and white chocolate. Other seasonal and holiday bagels include heart-shaped pink and red bagels for Valentine’s Day, green bagels for St. Patrick’s Day and pumpkin bagels in the fall. Rainbow bagels are available year-round. In fact, the rainbow food trend has been a boon to the bagel business, according to one baker.[Image Credit: © Andrew Becks from Pixabay]

Other

Japan Offers Its Own Versions Of Bread

Though Japan is not generally known as a bread-eating country, bread has become more popular, especially among young people, and the country does have its own unique varieties. Introduced in Japan by 16th century Portuguese traders – the Japanese word for bread, "pan," is derived from Portuguese – bread grew rapidly after World War II. The Japanese have adapted foreign bread-making techniques to create their own variations, including curry pan (doughnut-like bread filled with curry), melon pan (fluffy bread covered with a sweet cookie dough crust), anpan (bread filled with sweet bean paste), and katsu-sando (pork cutlet sandwiches). Japanese bakeries in New York City offer wasabi-butter breads, wasabi-sausage items, and pizzas with green shiso leaves.[Image Credit: © fancycrave1 from PIxabay]

Research & Insights

Science Is Helping To Make Bread Less Harmful For Some, More Healthful For All

Scientists are actively working on ways to reduce or eliminate components in bread (such as fructans and gluten) that create health issues for people with irritable bowel syndrome or celiac disease.  A Finnish company, for example, has introduced an enzyme called LOFO, which can help lower the fructan content in wheat bread. An American researcher has developed a reduced-gluten wheat using CRISPR gene-editing technology. For people looking for more healthful bread, European bakers are experimenting with tritordeum flour (a hybrid of wheat and wild barley) that yields 30 percent more fiber than traditional wheat flour. Other bakers are adding fiber by blending traditional wheat flour with lupin bean or lentil flour.[Image Credit: © Sabine Schulte from Pixabay]
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