So, what is sprouted? For centuries, people have understood that soaking and sprouting grains, seeds and beans was a necessity for consumption. This collective wisdom has become less common in the modern household but is re-emerging to enhance the digestibility and function of whole foods.
By Second Spring Director Nicole Manafas.
With gut and digestive issues on trend in conjunction with the rise in health conscious eating and home cooking, Second Spring Sprouted Organic Flours and Baking mixes tick all the boxes.
Sprouted grains and seeds are widely considered to be more bio-availalbe and digestible than unsprouted conventionals grains and seeds. Sprouting has shown to reduce levels of phytic acid, a natural inhibitor that stops the seeds nutrients from being released before optimum growing conditions are achieved. By germinating the seed we are starting this process which means that a whole host of biochemical reactions take place that pre-digest the grain, seed or pulse. For humans, this means certain enzymes have already been applied to break down the seed, meaning less work for our digestive system. Spouting also results in a lower Glycemic Index compared with unsprouted wheat flour.Whilst the sprouting wheat process does not remove gluten, it does change the molecular structure, which for some people who have discomfort digesting wheat products, may aid in the ability to digest and enjoy.
Before modern agriculture, crops were often exposed to the elements and sprouted naturally in the fields before being harvested. Many ancient cultures incorporated soaked grains and seeds into their regular diets for improved taste, texture or digestibility, even as far back as to 1350BC where sprouted grain was used in Egyptian bread making.
As consumers are moving more towards healthier choices for their ingredients it is only natural that the next evolution from organic, is sprouted. When purchasing a product that contains sprouted grains, seeds or pulses consumers feel assured they are receiveing the whole, naturally sprouted grain, seed or pulse and thus getting the best ingredients they can to use in their cooking. In baked products sprouted cereal grains will have a sweeter flavour then their unsprouted counterparts. Sprouted brown rice, hulless oats, farro and wheat berries have a soft and delicate texture when cooked, where as grains like buckwheat and millet are crunchy and for the professional or home cook the quest for flavour and texture is a mission that consumers will always pursue. An added benefit is that studies have shown that using sprouted wheat flour to replace regular flour causes bread to stale at a slower rate then unsprouted flour, and our real time shelf life studies also indicate that sprouted whole grain flours do not go rancid as quickly as unsprouted flours and have shelf lives of over one year, so longevity in food and ingredients for todays enviromentally conscious consumer and baker is also another great reason to use sprouted ingredients.
How we sprout
Throughout history many civilisations worked with nature to develop their own methods for soaking and sprouting grains. Here is how we do it…
It all starts with a seed. At Second Spring, we carefully source all our organic grains and seeds to ensure they are the highest quality. The germination journey begins with a whole and healthy raw seed as this is what holds all the vital nutrients, vitamins, and minerals.
A seed needs the right conditions to germinate so to kick start the process we expose the seeds to clean fresh water to soak. Once each seed reaches its ideal soaking time, we drain the water and sprouting begins.
Second Spring is conscious of the environment and as such our specially designed sprouting process reduces the amount of water we use, also giving you a sustainable product, you can feel good about.
When the conditions are perfect the seed burst into action – germination. We stop the sprouting process at different times for different seeds to maximise nutrition, digestion, and function.
Lastly, we carefully dry the seeds to preserve their sprouted goodness and make them shelf stable. It is important to note that a large sprout may not always be visible, but the important part is that raw grain goes through a slow soaking, sprouting period. It is the grain that holds the nutrition. From there the Sprouted seeds can be left whole or finely milled to create one of our sprouted flours. When we mill, we mill the entire grain to produce soft, versatile, nutrient-rich and 100% whole grain flours.
So, is sprouted the new organic? We would say yes and so much more!
Who is Second Spring Australia?
We are the Southern Hemisphere sister company to Second Spring Canada. We are Australian owned and currently importing our products from Canada but with the timeline to set up a Manufacturing plant in Australia in the near future. We not only have the range of retail packed flours and baking mixes, but we can also supply bulk sprouted ingredients to any manufacturers that are looking to incorporate sprouted into their current and future development.
About Nicole Manafas
Nicole Manafas is Director of Second Spring. Nicole has always been passionate about health and what is in the food we consume. She has a background of over 20 years’ experience in the FMCG health food industry and is excited to be bringing these amazing and innovative products to the Australian market.
About Second Spring
Second Spring Australia is an Australian owned company. Founded by Nicole and the Second Spring Canada family. Our primary goal is to set up a state-of-the-art sprouting facility in Australia to service the entire southern hemisphere. This was scheduled for the start of 2020 however, with the Global pandemic, we have had to pivot and rearrange our execution timelines. We will still be looking to set up the plant but as we don’t know when the world situation will allow this, we were compelled to continue the plan of launching these amazing retail products into the market. To establish the range, the decision was made to import the top three flours and three baking mixes to begin developing the brand locally. We are also planning to expand the range in the future to include a multitude of innovative and healthy options like grains and pulses.