Did you know that 12 – 19 June is Whole Grain Week?
With so many weeks and good causes to support and acknowledge, it is hard to keep up sometimes.
This is one that you don’t have to donate to. You just have to read, reflect and, if you are encouraged by what you read, get cooking!
The Grains & Legumes Nutrition Council (GLNC) and consecutive food supply chain (including growers, food manufacturers, retailers and dietitians are working together to encourage increased consumption of whole grains in Australian diets.
I must admit that as soon as we hit that extra fresh autumn day, I start thinking about pea and ham soup and beef and vegetable stew. Both of these include grains that I must admit, I probably don’t focus much on during the remainder of the year, as a whole grain.
GLNC say that prebiotics that are found in whole grain and high fibre grain foods have potential to induce the same sorts of immune enhancing effects as probiotics do and whole diets help our immune system to fight and avoid colds and the flu.
The June Australian Crop Report forecasts released this week states that national planting of winter crops in the 2022-23 will be the second highest on record – although in our region Autumn conditions have impacted sowing significantly to this point.
Winter crop production is forecast to reach the fourth highest on record at 50.9 million tonnes and summer crop production in 2021-22 is estimated to reach a new national record of 5.5 million tonnes.
In NSW, winter crop production is forecast to reach 14.7 million tonnes in 2022/23, which is 33% above the 10 year average to 2021-22, but 22% below last years exceptional outcomes. 6 million hectares were planted in NSW to winter crops.
We are fortunate living in rural communities. Even if you aren’t a primary producer, living in a rural community exposes you to paddocks of produce that we can watch grow and change with the season. We may not fully understand all of the other factors that go into raising a crop, but at least appreciate the significance of what is grown in our local areas.
The next time you are thinking about dinner options, consider what grains might add to your dish. Gluten issues are certainly a consideration. There are still grains (and seeds, like quinoa) that can be used in a similar form…so always do your research.