The proportion of white bread vs. grain bread consumed in Australia now runs close to half and half, compared with a ratio of 70:30 just a few years ago. Credit for this change goes to Go Grains Health & Nutrition Ltd., a non-governmental voluntary coalition of growers, processors, manufacturers and marketers.
“We got started about 12 years ago,” said Robyn Murray, general manager, Go Grains, Mosman, Australia. “Our members market and advertise their own foods individually, but this is a category-wide effort to talk about grain-based foods from an independent, scientific perspective. We deliver the science.”
Dietary guidelines in Australia encourage consumers to eat at least four servings per day of grain-based foods, with a target of 48 g of grains daily.
Go Grains tracks the whole-grain promotion programs in which many of Australia’s bakers participate, describing these on its website, www.gograins.com.au
“We want to encourage people to eat at least half of their grains as whole grains,” Ms. Murray said. Australians tend to be health-conscious, she observed, “but people still don’t understand whole grains very well.” Go Grains recently conducted an online survey of consumers and found them eating about one-third of the whole-grain recommendation.
Go Grains developed a special “4 + serves a day” logo for use on grain-based foods. The logo’s usage criteria differ from the Whole Grain Stamp of the Whole Grains Council, she explained. “In addition to the amount of grains contained, the product’s nutrient content and ingredient profile are also considered,” Ms. Murray said. “For example, high-sugar cereals don’t qualify.” Use of the “4 + serves a day” logo is restricted to members of Go Grains.