5 years ago

Innovative beer-brewing of typical, old and healthy wheat varieties to boost their spreading

Innovative beer-brewing of typical, old and healthy wheat varieties to boost their spreading
Brewing with large fractions, up to 100%, of raw unmalted grains from certain Mediterranean old wheat varieties, is experimentally shown to be technically feasible, leading to beers retaining all the basic features of traditional products, as well as showing potentially healthy qualities, in terms of total polyphenol content and antioxidant activity, comparable to 100% barley malt beers. Beer has become the worldwide most consumed alcoholic beverage and, although few global players and standardized products dominate its market, craft breweries have quickly spread out in many countries. Nevertheless, severe issues have arisen about the economic sustainability of microbreweries, mainly due to high initial capital investment, energy costs, scale, and sometimes taxation. Recently, a breakthrough, cheaper, and more efficient brewing technology based on controlled hydrodynamic cavitation has been introduced, whose applicability to raw unmalted grains from typical old wheat varieties is experimentally demonstrated, leading to results comparable with traditional techniques but at a fraction of the cost, opening a new way to increase the profitability of craft microbreweries. In turn, profitably brewing a fraction of old wheat varieties could represent a viable support to the upscaling of the respective cultivation, the latter representing a necessary condition to relieve the economic sustainability issues and improve the environmental sustainability. Along with the high, renowned nutritional and healthy value of certain old wheat varieties in comparison to modern ones, their spreading could contribute to both lowering the environmental footprint of the cereal sector and improving the public health, as well as contributing to a prospective and environmentally very favorable shift of the human diet from animal-source proteins to plant-source proteins.

Publisher URL: www.sciencedirect.com/science

DOI: S0959652617323181

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