Use of Australian wheat for Asian baking being boosted

Monday 14 March, 2016

AEGIC baking workshops in Philippines and Indonesia showcase Australian wheat

  • AEGIC technical baking workshops in South East Asia well-attended and well-received
  • Major customers of Australian wheat engaged in Manila, Jakarta and Makassar
  • Part of an ongoing project to increase the use of Australian wheat in Asian baking

The Australian Export Grains Innovation Centre (AEGIC) has conducted a series of technical baking workshops for major customers of Australian wheat in Indonesia and the Philippines.

Over several weeks, AEGIC’s wheat and baking experts worked with key flour millers, bakeries and food companies in Manila, Jakarta and Makassar as part of AEGIC’s Australian Wheat for Asian Baking project.

AEGIC Wheat Quality Specialist Dr Larisa Cato said the project aimed to demonstrate Australian wheat’s performance in the production of Asian-style baked products, and to assist flour millers in their use of Australian wheat.

“The project involves understanding market requirements and acceptability of current Australian wheat varieties – as well as studying dough mixing and processing – to help Australian wheat breeders and growers to better target varieties with unique bread making potential,” she said.

“The overall goal is to strengthen the position of Australian wheat in South East Asia.”

Dr Cato said the baking and milling industries in Indonesia were changing, with traditional, smaller artisan craft bakeries being rapidly replaced on an industrial scale.

“Consumption of wheat-based baked products in Asia continues to grow as Asian consumers adopt more Western-style diets,” she said.

“Australia is well placed to play a positive role in this change by understanding the requirements of these industries and providing practical solutions to them.”

“This is the aim of AEGIC’s project: ‘Australian Wheat for Asian Baking – Innovative Technology Package’.”

Use of Australian wheat 2

Use of Australian wheat in Jakarta

Dr Cato said conducting in-market workshops was an effective way of showcasing the quality and functionality attributes of Australian wheat directly to major customers in South East Asia, including flour millers which are among the world’s largest: Bogasari and Eastern Pearl Flour Mills.

Dr Cato said the hands-on workshops were highly successful and well-received.

“We received very positive feedback and participants expressed strong interest in future follow-up events,” she said.

Dr Cato said the project involved collaboration with consultancy BakeTran, headed by baking expert Stan Cauvain.

“The key is to be looking ahead to accommodate for the region’s market needs, not only now, but where possible in 5-10 years’ time,” Mr Cauvain said.

The Manila workshops were attended by companies including San Miguel, Atlantic Grain, Philippine Foremost Milling Corporation, RFM Foods, Wellington Food Products International, URC and Monde Nissin.

Mr John Poon of Atlantic Grains said: “The seminar was beneficial to us, it gave me additional knowledge on the wheat produced from Australia and the seminar on energy and temperature control was of great help.”

Ms A. Sio from San Miguel Mills said: “The workshop was beneficial in introducing the potential of Australian wheat for baking Philippine breads. Is it the right step forward for AUS wheat industry? I think and I believe so. Educating the millers, research and development personnel, quality control staff as well as bakers is a good approach to move forward with Australian wheat in the Philippine market.”

The Jakarta workshops were attended by Bogasari (Indonesia’s largest flour miller) and their customers, including Sari Roti (Indonesia’ largest bakery), Mr Bread, Bread Line, and MataHari.

The Makassar workshops were attended by milling and baking technicians from Eastern Pearl Flour Mills.

Mr Abdul Qahhar Mudzakkar from Eastern Pearl Flour Mills said: “(The workshop) has benefit… by giving insights and bringing knowledge of the principles of baking, which was a different approach from what was previously known… particularly the relationship of energy with gluten development during mixing.”

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Media contact
Keir Tunbridge
0409 991 817