Students choose healthier bread,
food fight averted
Minnesota school district successfully modifies whole grain bread formulas
Cargill’s Bakery Technology Group helped a Minnesota school district adjust its formulas to make whole grain breads appealing to their students. Breads baked in the schools using WheatSelect® white spring whole wheat flour contain 60% less fat and 20% fewer calories than their previous bread formula.
On the left is the school district’s former roll and on the right is the reformulated Wheat Select roll, with 60 percent reduced fat and 20 percent fewer calories.
Baking breads from scratch is a tradition and a signature item in the nutrition program for Osseo Area Schools District 279 (a suburban school district northwest of Minneapolis). Staff members have worked hard over the last five years to increase student acceptability of whole grains in their breads.
Looking for help in incorporating whole grains and improving bread quality, an Osseo Schools nutrition manager contacted the Grains for Health Foundation http://www.grainsforhealth.org. Cargill is a founding member of the foundation and Jessica Wellnitz, senior food technologist, Bakery Technology Group, is on the Future of Grains in Schools Taskforce.
“I contacted Tom Pellegrino, the director of Food and Nutrition Services for Osseo Schools, and we developed a plan to review their formulas to help them incorporate 51 percent whole grains into their dinner rolls and French bread,” said Jessica. “Tom and his staff are very passionate people who care a lot about school nutrition.”
WheatSelect® flour passes the student test
Cargill’s Bakery Technology Group provided five dinner roll formulas that replaced traditional whole wheat flour with WheatSelect® white spring whole wheat flour. The new formulas offered reductions in fat, salt and sugar. The team also provided processing recommendations so each of the district’s 21 schools could successfully make the breads as baking equipment varies greatly from school to school.
WheatSelect® flour is 100 percent whole wheat but gives baked products more of the lighter color, softer texture and milder flavor of traditional wheat flour. It is made from select wheat varieties that optimize key baking characteristics like volume, mixing and processing tolerance.
The dinner rolls were a hit among staff members – one kitchen manager described the rolls as the best they have made in years - it provides a fresh baked bread aroma.
School market a big opportunity
In 2009, more than 31.3 million children in the United States received their lunch each day through the National School Lunch Program, a 30 percent increase from 1990.
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