NCI rheology course focuses on understanding wheat and flour quality tests

Farm Forum

Fargo, N.D. – Six participants from United Arab Emirates (UAE) and United States recently attended the Rheology of Wheat and Flour Quality course at Northern Crops Institute. They learned about wheat quality and how to analyze, interpret, and apply rheological results effectively.

Each participant had the opportunity to gain hands-on experience with the rheological instruments. They focused on tests for dough strength, viscosity, gluten content, falling number, flour color, ash content, moisture, starch damage, and texture analysis. Equipment training included the Buhler lab mill, SD-Matic, Alveograph, Mixolab, RVA, Farinograph, Extensograph, TA-XT Plus, and C-Cell Technology.

Hands-on baking sessions helped participants understand the impact of flour quality on baked products and baking performance, and how to perform tests to evaluate the baked product’s quality.

“The focus of the course is to help participants who work in the baking and milling industries understand the differences in wheat and flour quality, and how those differences can affect baking performance,” says John Crabtree, NCI Assistant Director. “Our ultimate goal is to make sure that participants understand the performance of wheat and flour, so they can trouble shoot for their customers through scientific methods. The underlying theme of this course is customer service as it relates to the baking industry,” concludes Crabtree.

Topics of the course were: an overview of the U.S. wheat classes; factors that define wheat and flour quality; impact of milling on wheat flour quality; impact of protein and starch on end product quality; characterization of mixing, fermentation, and baking processes; and functional ingredients in flour and flour based products.

Speakers for the course were Rachel Carlson, NCI Food Technologist; Natsuki Fujiwara, NCI Food Scientist; Thunyaporn Naggie Jeradechachai, NCI Crop Quality Specialist; David Hahn, Ph.D., NCI Director of Technical Services and Business Development; Robert Meyer, Dakota Specialty Milling; and Rilie Morgan, NCI Processing Specialist.

Northern Crops Institute is the international center for meeting and learning about crops produced in the four-state region of North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota and Montana. Situated on the campus of North Dakota State University, NCI exists as a forum to bring together customers, commodity traders, technical experts, processors and producers from all points of the globe for discussion, education, and technical service programs. Since 1983, the Institute has hosted visitors from more than 130 countries.