Offered in greater variety than ever, today’s organic breads take full advantage of seeds, nuts and grain additions.

Today’s organic breads are “not your father’s Oldsmobile,” stodgily mimicking conventional styles. They’re more like your bachelor brother’s Camaro — muscled up with nuts, seeds and multiple grains. But they may require an assist to help hold up such high-powered ingredients.

Formulators can choose organic vital wheat gluten to soup up such applications, but to give these products even greater structural support, Manildra Group USA introduced Organic GemPro HPG wheat protein isolate. Vital wheat gluten, in organic or conventional styles, contains 75% protein, but the isolate kicks that up to 90%.

That’s plenty of octane to boost the performance of next-generation organic breads.

“As demand for organic wheat-based products has moved outside of standard pan bread, the demand for differing protein functionality has evolved,” said Brook Carson, vice-president, Manildra Group USA. “GemPro HPG is higher in protein than vital wheat gluten and provides more strength and structure. Other Organic GemPro products can be used when the goal is to boost protein without too much strength and functionality.”

Manildra, a specialist in gluten and starch derived from wheat, was the first to market organic vital wheat gluten in the 2000s. “Since then, the market has just continued to grow, and the variability in demand has grown, too,” she explained. “Organic wheat gluten is clean-label, high in protein and provides functionality — all valuable attributes in an array of today’s products.”

There’s a starch side to the organic equation, too. Because wheat kernels contain both protein and starch, processes that extract the gluten also yield starch. Manildra offers Organic GemStar 100 native starch and Organic GemGel 100 pregelatinized starch. “The applications opportunities for starch are wide, and as developers continue to look for ways to optimize texture in organic products, these starches can provide the needed characteristics,” Ms. Carson said.

She also noted organic wheat starch can substitute for dusting flour to defray the high cost of using organic flour instead. Pregelatinized starches are useful in frozen applications.

“All of our organic products are produced by simple washing procedures,” Ms. Carson said. Physical separation, done without chemical solvents, ensures compliance with federal National Organic Program requirements. Produced at the company’s Hamburg, IA, facility, these ingredients are certified organic by Quality Assurance International.

Because these glutens and starches are made from wheat, they are compatible with the main component of baked foods: wheat flour. That’s essential, Ms. Carson noted, as the organic category and the number of organic producers continues to grow. “Having consistent, compatible ingredients will ensure the finished product has the attributes we are all looking for in baked goods,” she added.

The US Department of Agriculture in April reported another year of double-digit increases in the number of US organic producers. Such progress in organic crops is critical, Ms. Carson observed, in providing an available and consistent supply. “With this growth, we can be confident in continuing to develop and support organic wheat starches and proteins,” she said. “Customers enjoy the fact that such US-sourced, organic ingredients are commercially available and are made locally.”

For specs describing organic vital wheat gluten and wheat starches, visit