Author: Jan Willem van der Kamp
Health Benefits Beyond Wholegrain Bread
Bakeries can easily increase the health benefits of bread by adding a mixture of the healthiest parts of the grain kernel to their own recipes. There are several options for combining a white bread-like taste with wholegrain bread.
A growing number of bakeries in Austria, Germany and Italy are launching tasty, clean label premium bread products with health benefits beyond wholegrain bread. The bakeries apply guidelines developed in the EU 'HealthBread' project, coordinated by TNO in the Netherlands. For 'HealthBread', clean label means no additives; products that contain wheat, yeast and salt only.
Fibre and other healthy compounds, such as iron, magnesium, zinc, folate and anti-oxidants, are concentrated in the outer layers of the wheat grain kernel. However, most Europeans prefer the mild taste and the aerated structure of white bread, made with the white flour at the core, leaving out the most nutritional part of the grain. In three steps, bakers can create their own unique HealthBread by adding a wholegrain concentrate and using their own craftsmanship.
3 steps to creating Health Bread, using your own craftsmanship
First, the baker adds one of the mild tasting fibre-rich wheat fractions to the (white) base flour. One fraction is named the wholegrain concentrate (WGC) that contains bran and germ of a white mild tasting wheat variety. The bread can be named wholegrain when 18% of the flour is WGC: mixing 18 parts of WGC with 82 parts of base flour. Other fractions that can be used are rich in aleurone, which is the mild tasting inner part of the bran fraction. Final development of aleurone rich fractions is ongoing. Fibre levels will be at least similar to those in WGC.
Following this, the wheat fraction needs a long fermentation time of between 12 and 20 hours before addition to the recipe. During fermentation, the enzyme wheat phytase degrades phytate, which is the poorly digestible compound that binds iron and zinc. Fermentation contributes to a higher bread volume, a better taste and an increased bioavailability of important minerals such as iron and zinc.
The third step is to ferment the whole dough by using specific enzymes and processing conditions. A bread structure and volume similar to white bread can be created.
Some bakers create a unique taste by adding other ingredients, rye flour or pieces of apple for example. Others vary with dough fermentation conditions by using sourdough or long pre-fermentation as part of the dough. Some of these conditions create a whole day of freshness. A growing number of bakers are using a wheat fraction ‘Carat’, the pre-fermented mild tasting wholegrain concentrate produced by HealthBread’s partner GoodMills Innovation. HealthBread’s success also triggers options for further innovations, such as the development of attractive clean label breads with higher levels of fibre, minerals and vitamins or further optimisation of product structure.
70% of consumers were willing to pay more for HealthBread products
1000 customers of HealthBread bakeries compared the first HealthBread products with their favorite standard bread. The taste of both was highly appreciated as well as the information about nutritional and health benefits of the HealthBread products. This information is fully in line with the strict European legislation. Due to the convincing nutrition and health story, 70% of consumers were willing to pay more for the HealthBread products.
You can find the HealthBread Bakers Manual in different languages by clicking here. The manual describes the HealthBread approach and includes a step-by-step guide for developing and launching HealthBread products, as well as possible nutritional and health benefits that are in line with EU regulations.
Join the success!
Are you interested in developing your own HealthBread product? Bakers from Austria or Germany can contact GoodMills Innovation - firstname.lastname@example.org, bakers in Italy can contact Open Fields - email@example.com and bakers from the Netherlands can contact Nederlands Bakkerij Centrum - firstname.lastname@example.org. Bakers from other countries can use the get in touch section below. Your message will go directly to Martijn Noort, TNO Netherlands. You can also get in touch to discuss further innovations in the healthy bread area!