Have you noticed the number of new products on the supermarket shelf with “ancient grains” on the package and ingredients such as: chia, flaxseed and quinoa in the ingredient statement? According to Mintel Global New Product Database (GNPD), the number is around 1,000 worldwide. Since 2015 we have seen about 50 blueberry-ancient grain products introduced.
What is an ancient grain? There really is not an official definition for this but my personal guess is: grains and cereals that have been historically consumed since ancient times. These ancient grains are differentiated from the “modern grains” which are in high volume mass production.
Flaxseed, chia, quinoa, kamut, amaranth teff and others.
What is the connection to blueberries? Blueberries and blueberry ingredients share the same type of “health halo” as ancient grains such as flaxseed, chia and quinoa. Blueberries are a great addition to foods which utilize the addition of ancient grains as functional and on-pack consumer attraction. That is my guess!
Anyway, here is a collection of the interesting blueberry and ancient grain products around the world.
Companies using ancient grains are natural targets for blueberry usage. You will see more blueberry ancient grain products in the future.
One of my daily jobs is to post new research citations for blueberries. I must admit, as the “Blueberry Guy,” I know a lot about blueberries and usage thereof. But, with health research — I am certainly learning each day. I receive the citations, then carefully post into our online database. Luckily, they are categorized. Some of this stuff is amazingly complex. But, exciting to be onthe front line of blueberry discoveries! You can go to the online database and search in a number of ways. This is a research database modeled after what research librarians use. Go ahead and make a search, but make sure to clear before next search. Time to add ten more citations!
Blueberries have been considered beneficial for centuries in Native American, First Nations and other cultures around the world — anywhere they are grown.
Check out the following USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS) searchable database titled: “Dr. Duke’s Phytochemical and Ethnobotanical Database.” Dr. Duke was a pioneer researcher at North Carolina State University and was taking “Nutraceuticals” long before there was a term for it. Note this database includes all plant parts including leaves, blossoms, roots as well as fruit.
With all of the buzz about fiber in foods, a new product has entered the food ingredient market: Blueberry Fiber. When blueberry puree is made, the skins are normally removed in the process. These skins are air dried down to a moisture content of around 15%. From there the product can be milled down to various sizes. How is it used: Blueberry fiber has a neutral flavor and not a lot of sweetness and has been used in extruded snacks and pet foods.
It is also used in breakfast cereals and breads. The star performance category has been the pet food category which has been covered regularly in this blog. “Add blueberry fiber in the formula and post big beautiful blueberry photos on the package that appeal to the per owner. What is in the blueberry fiber:
Here it is!