Eat Local: Wheat Joins the Party

I have a particular interest in wheat (and flour!) these days, so when I saw this Atlantic story on the growing local flour movement I was excited. (Yes, excited about wheat.)

About 10 days ago, I spent the afternoon up at the Annville Mill learning about Daisy Organic Flour for an upcoming story in Grid. Dave Poorbaugh of McGeary Organics (owner of the Daisy Flour brand) led me on a tour of the 300-year old mill and filled my mind with vast stores (zing!) of grain-related knowledge.

Daisy's organic soft wheat (used for pastry flour) is all grown locally, and the company is experimenting with heritage varieties that contain a bit more protein (better for bread baking). They even get a shout-out in the Atlantic story:

Of course, there are the old-timers, like Daisy Flour in southeastern Pennsylvania, which has milled local wheat continuously since the late 19th century, and the relative old-timers—like Vermont's Butterworks Farm and Gleason Grains, which have been growing grain for human consumption (as opposed to livestock feed) since the 1980s. Then there is the "new" generation. In 2006, veteran baker Don Lewis, of Wild Hive Farm in Clinton Corners, New York, began exclusively sourcing local grains for his breads and rugelach. Rochester's Small World Bakerylaunched a bread club in 2007 that provides members with a weekly loaf baked from New York flour. And Cayuga Pure Organics, a 600-acre grain and beans farm, was founded in 2003 by two long-time Ithaca farmers, Erick Smith and Dan Lathwell. 

Want to know more? Look forward to a full feature on Daisy, their amazing flour and the Annville Mill in Grid's May issue.