Regional Australian farmers venture into teff
Image Credit: CSIRO
Two Australian farmers have ventured into growing the native Ethiopian grain, teff, in an attempt to diversify their crops and establish an innovative revenue stream.
Teff is a gluten-free wholegrain that has been a staple in Ethiopian cooking for centuries. Teff is considered to be the world’s smallest grain and its fibre content is several times higher than wheat and rice.
The two farmers who decided to start growing teff, Fraser McNaul and his father, Shane McNaul, planted two varieties of the crop, brown and ivory teff. It was able to grow between their usual wheat, barley, corn and rice crops.
The pair established a company to sell teff based products through called Outback Harvest and approached the CSIRO to help them with product development.
Fraser McNaul said the CSIRO was able to help by producing prototype muffins, breads and dry cake mixes.
“They also developed healthy extruded teff snacks. Their facilities and expertise helped make it all happen.”
The teff muffin and pancake mixes, along with teff flour are now being prepared for launch into the retail and wholesale market.
“There’s been a lot of interest in the products because they’re Australian-grown and certified gluten-free,” Fraser said.
“We’re also looking at other value adding opportunities like snack bars, tortillas and flat breads, and exporting to Asia.”
Food Innovation Australia Limited (FIAL) also assisted in the development of Outback Harvest teff range.
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