Making a comeback
Ancient wheats are perceived as being more ‘natural’ than today’s modern wheat, which is often refined and where the wheat is bred to meet specific baking needs. Although no official definition exists, ancient wheats are considered to be original, natural and unchanged over the last several hundred years.
They’ve become so popular that new product launches of breads of ancient wheat varieties have more than tripled in the last five years. This trend is most prominent in northern and eastern Europe, but it’s also growing globally. The baking industry is trying to meet consumers’ demands for different varieties of healthy breads, while managing costs and raw material quality.
“However, the challenge is that these ancient wheats varieties are much harder to process than modern wheats. Bakers typically get lower volume breads that are very dense – not what consumers expect"
Ancient wheats meet biotech
Adding enzymes to the baking process solves these problems. The breads become soft, elastic, moist, and have a fine crumb structure that consumers have come to expect.
For example, fresh-keeping enzymes deliver softness and moistness throughout shelf life while dough conditioning enzymes increase bread volume and improve crumb structure. Dough strengthening optimizes these important bread characteristics even further, while gluten strengthening enzymes provide better dough stability.