Amber Waves (of Grain)
Today’s wheat is a far cry from the “amber waves of grain” our grandparents’ generation enjoyed daily. Author of Wheat Belly, Dr. William Davis, and many other professionals, are bringing the true issue of today’s wheat to the forefront of the conversation.
Whole grains were once nutritious and fiber dense. Now, the genetically altered seeds are produced with one purpose in mind: productivity. Over the last few decades, wheat has transformed from the beautiful, and healthful, 4 1/2 foot tall crop. Today, genetically altered wheat only stands 18-24 inches tall. The purpose? So the crop does not break and farmers do not lose yield. While this sounds like the work of a farming genius, the genetic alterations were not studied prior to implementing worldwide.
Enter Jeff and Emma Zimmerman. A father-daughter duo with a passion for heirlooms and ancient grains. When Jeff and Emma were looking to start a wheat field of generations-past grains, they rapidly realized that it was going to take hard work to even acquire the abandoned seeds. They literally searched the country and met with grain experts to track the precious seeds down.
Today, Jeff and Emma proudly run Hayden Flour Mills in Queen Creek, Arizona. They started by planting 30 acres of grain in December 2011 and have expanded to 120 acres, featuring 12 kinds of grains. They are growing, and fast, thanks to the public discovering the beauty, and health, of the ancient amber waves of grain.
According to the FDA, a “whole grain” contains 51% whole grains by weight.
Fiber-Stripped “Whole Grains”: you would have to eat 10 bowls of multi-grain Cheerios and 16 slices of whole-wheat bread to get your daily fiber dose.
Today’s wheat is a product of 40 years of genetic research aimed at increasing yield-per-acre. “The result is a genetically unique plant that stands 18-24” tall, not the 4 1/2′ tall ‘amber waves of grain’ we all remember. “