Flour Facts

Up-to-Date Weekly Market Highlights
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November 17, 2022

Weekly Market Highlights

  • Wheat futures down today on news the grain corridor deal has been extended by 120 days. Futures had eased earlier in the week on confidence that the deal was going to happen but rallied back on news that Przewodów, Poland, had been inadvertently hit with missiles resulting in the death of two individuals. While originally reported that Russia was responsible, it was confirmed that the missiles had been fired by Ukrainian forces.
  • IHS Markit is now calling all wheat area for the 2022/2023 year 47.178 million acres which is 155,000 acres less than its number for October yet higher than last year’s figure of 45.738 million acres. Winter wheat plantings came in at 33.946 million acres vs. 33.271 last year while spring wheat (minus durum) is also up at 11.450 million acres vs. 10.835 last year. Durum is pegged at 1.782 million acres vs. 1.632 last year.

Flour Facts will be taking a break next week. Please watch for our next issue December 1.


Bleaching Flour

    The term “bleaching” is a traditional baking industry term that refers to the whitening and sometimes the maturing (aging) of flour. Bleaching best describes the process of whitening. Technically speaking, the carotenoid (yellow) pigments in the flour are oxidized to produce whiter flour. Oxidization can occur naturally, over time, with the exposure of flour to air. Historically, millers would age flour for several weeks to achieve white flour. This natural oxidation, however, was an uneven process requiring considerable time and space.
   Today the bleaching process is accomplished by the use of bleaching agents. The two most common bleaching agents are benzoyl peroxide and chlorine gas. Flours treated with bleaching agents must be labeled as bleached flour.

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