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Silvery Tweed Cereals

01289 307419

Blending, Milling, Seed Cleaning, Flaking, Coating

Silvery Tweed Cereals - The Benefits of Barley

Latest news

5 Jul 2018
Borders-based cereal processing firm Silvery Tweed is raising a glass to its 175th birthday, marking the occasion by collaborating with a local brewery to create two limited-edition Silvery Tweed beers.
20 May 2018
Silvery Tweed’s certification under the BRC Global Standard for Food Safety has been upgraded to an AA rating – the highest score possible.
10 Jan 2018
Cereal processor Silvery Tweed Cereals is continuing to champion the UK’s grain growing capabilities with its newest supply partnership.

The benefits of barley

March 2016


As the trend for health foods and ancient grains hits its zenith, a new study has highlighted the impressive nutritional benefits of barley. So what makes barley so fantastic, and how can businesses incorporate more of it into their products?

With the ‘wellness phenomenon’ continuing to reach new heights, it’s safe to say that the healthy eating market is here to stay. With sales of ‘miracle’ health foods such as chia seeds and amaranth continuing to escalate, while carbohydrates and products containing gluten are increasingly demonised in the press, the bakery industry has had to adapt to consumer demand with an ever-widening range of free-from products and brand-new superfoods.

Recent research, though, shows that it isn’t always the newest foods on the block that are actually the best for us. A study conducted by scientists at the University of Lund in Sweden has shown that bread made using one of the world’s oldest grains – barley – could actually cut the risk of obesity and diabetes in the general public. Furthermore, the scientists observed these positive effects after participants had been eating the barley bread for just three days. With the results of the study published in the midst of a media storm surrounding the UK’s obesity crisis, could barley be the answer to Britain’s weight problem?

It’s safe to say that, at Silvery Tweed, we know a thing or two about barley. Our proximity to the famed barley-growing areas of Northumberland, East Lothian and the Scottish Borders allows us to source specific varieties from growers generally based within a 40-mile radius of the plant, and we’re dedicated to finding ways to create innovative new products with it, from flakes to flour, kibbled grains to coated cereals. So, now that one of our long-term core products is being heralded as the newest ‘superfood’ in the health food aisle, what makes barley so fantastic, and how can businesses incorporate more of it into their products?

 

Barley: a brief biography

Cultivated across the world for over six thousand years, barley has long played an important role in Britain’s breads, biscuits and beers.

Supplanted long ago by wheat as the world’s most widely-consumed grain, a large amount of the world’s barley production is malted and then used as the chief component of beer and whisky. The majority of the remainder now goes into animal feed, although many cultures still use barley in soups, stews and breads. Though wheat is by far the most commonly-used grain in the UK today, barley pops up in all sorts of staple foods: most of us are familiar with the sweet, cloudy taste of barley water, and pearl barley stews and risottos are becoming popular alternatives to the rice-based originals.

 

The new superfood on the block?

Although the majority of the world’s barley goes into our livestock or our pint glasses, a growing understanding of the grain’s nutritional benefits have helped to firmly establish it as a fixture in the health food aisle. Barley is a rich source of essential nutrients: as well as being full of fibre, it’s also high in protein, B vitamins and niacin, and has been shown to help the body regulate its blood sugar levels far better than white or even wholegrain wheat. And if that isn’t encouraging enough, the recent study by Lund University in has shown that a barley-rich diet could help prevent both cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

The Lund University study surveyed healthy, middle-aged participants, who were asked to eat bread largely made out of barley kernels for three days – at breakfast, lunch and dinner – against a control group who ate mainly white bread. After their final meal of the day, participants were examined for risk indicators of diabetes and cardiovascular disease. After just three days on the barley bread diet, participants showed an improved metabolism, a decrease in blood sugar, cholesterol and insulin levels, and improved appetite control.

The results of the research could herald a new trend in health foods containing barley products: with over 28% of the UK adult population recognised as clinically obese by the WHO, and the NHS under strain from the extra costs presented by overweight patients, clinicians and researchers are under pressure to find new ways to help the UK lose weight and improve their general health. Could barley provide a new grain of hope?

 

The barley business - what can you do?

With the health benefits of the grain a hot topic in the national news, now is the ideal time for businesses in the food and drink industry to join in. From bakeries to breweries and beyond, we’ve noticed a recent surge in demand for our barley products, and its appeal is only set to become more widespread – so how can your business join the newest health craze on the market?

Incorporate barley products into your product range 

Whether for a new product range or a recipe reformulation, Silvery Tweed’s extensive selection of barley formats can help add diversity – and health credentials – to any product portfolio. From flakes to flour, kibbles to puffs, we can cater for all your barley processing requirements. And, as one of only a handful of cereal processors in the UK with barley pearling facilities, we can deal with all your barley needs.

Give your barley products a promotional boost

Are your breakfast cereals bursting with barley? Now is the perfect time to let your customers know what you have to offer. Marks & Spencer, for example, have certainly been doing their health homework: the retail giant recently launched two new barley-rich loaves of bread as part of the company’s new high-fibre initiative. Both of these have their barley content clearly marked – which, in the wake of the Lund University study, has helped to put them in the public eye. Make like M&S and clearly mark your barley-containing products: if barley is the newest buzzword in healthy eating, it’s time to make the most of it.

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