Hosts Carl Duley and Jerry Clark interview Dr. Pat Hayes, Post-doc Brigid Meints, and Dr. Lucia Gutierrez about a nationwide effort to develop naked (hulless) barley into a food crop.
Recorded August 25, 2020
Jerry Clark, Lucia Gutierrez, Dr. Pat Hayes, Brigid Meints, Carl Duley, JASON FISCHBACH
JASON FISCHBACH 00:00
This is a podcast about new crops. You’re gonna love it. Join us on the cutting edge, a podcast in search of new crops for Wisconsin. (music)
Jerry Clark 00:27
Welcome to the cutting edge a podcast in search of new crops for Wisconsin. I’m your co host Jerry Clark with the University of Wisconsin Madison- Division of Extension in Chippewa County. I serve as an agricultural educator, and my co host today is Carl Duley.
Carl Duley 00:44
Yes, thanks, Jerry. Carl Duley in Buffalo County with UW-Madison Extension. So Jerry, we’re here in late August things are kind of winding up with small grains. How did things go in Chippewa County this year?
Jerry Clark 01:00
Well, yeah, Carl, we know we’ve had our small grain trials here for several years now. And I think yields were average, I would say we you know, we had quite a bit of rain early in June and I think that might have flushed out some nitrogen that we had in our sandy soils. So yields I thought would have been better. But we also had a lot of weed pressure this year, too. So I think the yield is average for for what we’ve seen, but it’s been a good year in terms of precipitation.
Carl Duley 01:29
Yeah, and our spring grain yields were just were pretty good, but not super. Our winter barley plots this year were pretty incredible. With our with our yields with our high being wheat probably averaged about 90 to 95 bushel on our winter barley plots with the high being 180 which was pretty incredible, which kind of makes up for 2019 which was zero because we had nothing survive the winter so I think we got a little bit of learning to go that and maybe that’s a future podcast for us. Today we’re gonna we’re gonna head a little bit a different direction and talk about naked barley. It’s a nationwide project. I think there’s four states if I remember right involved in, and we have three guests with us on this podcast. And I think we’ll have have our guests introduce themselves. And maybe we’ll start with Bridget, who’s kind of the overall project manager I think is your title or are correct me if I’m wrong?
Brigid Meints 02:25
That’ll work. So I’m Bridget mine, and I’m a postdoc at Oregon State University in the barley breeding program. And my primary job is to manage this national project on developing multi use naked barley for organic farming systems, which is a project funded by the USDA NIFA Grant.
Carl Duley 02:49
And then Pat, we’ll stay in Oregon if you want to just give us a little background and how you’re involved with this project.
Dr. Pat Hayes 02:56
Yeah, well thanks, Carl. Yeah, the our interest in naked barleys goes back a long way. And you know, as I’ve often said, It’s sad time that barley shed the hull after 10,000 years, the wild barleys are covered. They do have an adhering hull and so naked barley just offers so many opportunities and removes so many obstacles that I think limit the wider scale adoption of barley. And just a word about the naked, you know, relating to Barney. That’s the mechanically accepted term for a barley that does not have an adhering hull. It is not a prurient interest in religion.
Carl Duley 03:39
Lucia Gutierrez 03:42
Hi, I’m Lucia Gutierrez I’m the cereal breeder and quantitative geneticist at the University of Wisconsin Madison, and I’m also working on this project on the side for the principal investigator. I think it’s a fantastic project and I think it It could be an alternative to bring more barley back to Wisconsin.
Carl Duley 04:04
If we just step back, Pat mentioned that naked barley is the accepted term. At first I thought hulless but why Why get away from the word hulless? I think I know.
Dr. Pat Hayes 04:18
I’ll dive into that one and then let Bridget go because she’s really got you know I think a lot of insight into this topic and for me it’s a grammatical matter because then you start going down this rabbit hulled and de-hulled and do you have a hyphen or don’t you have a hyphen. Bridgette please?
Brigid Meints 04:40
Um, yeah, so basically, originally we were calling these things hullless and hulled. And I noticed when I was shopping at, you know, our local Co Op and the bulk bin they would have their Naked barley labeled as hulled, and in fact they meant do you hull? And so there just seemed to be a lot of confusion around the terms. And so you know, we sort of changed our own language and I think it’s made it clear but also perhaps a little more interesting to people you know, our latest release was Buck and I think people have enjoyed that Buck Naked Barley.
Jerry Clark 05:36
You mentioned something, I know Pat said about the opportunities and and for growing it and maybe Lucia in from Wisconsin can also chime in. But what is that, you know, what is the market for it? I mean, is it for you know, more of the flour is it for beer, what are we looking at to use it for? Versus you know, maybe the barley that we think of for feed and cattle feed and that kind of thing.
Dr. Pat Hayes 06:00
I can start at least generally and then Lucia can talk more about Wisconsin. So, you know, naked barley actually arose from a spontaneous mutation, gosh, like 8500 years ago, so it’s been around for a long time. But it’s been traditionally used primarily for food for human consumption. So without that adhering hull, you don’t have to do any additional processing. It can be eaten directly as a steamed grain, milled into flour, rolled into flakes, cracked into grits, there are a number of applications but if that hull is attached, it’s not very palatable. And so in order to eat it, you would need to purl it first, which is an additional processing step as well as it removes some of the Bran and germ because it’s a polishing process. And it’s pretty hard to just remove the hull and so you lose some of those additional nutritional components and it results in a product that can no longer be considered a whole grain. And so food has really been the primary use for naked barley traditionally, you know, it still remains a staple crop in certain areas of the world the Himalayan region, Andean region, Ethiopia, areas where, you know, other grains won’t necessarily thrive at really high altitudes, and barley will and so that’s where a lot of genetic diversity in naked barley can be found. But this project is looking at using naked barley additionally for feed and malt, and so no, it has some benefits as a feed in for non ruminants because they can’t digest the hull. And so actually in the 1970s Canadian barley breeders really latched on to make it barley as a swine feed. And so they did a lot of work breeding naked varieties for feed. And in fact, I think at its peak in the early 2000s, there were about 750,000 acres of naked barley being grown in the Canadian prairies for feed. And so that is another use it hasn’t really taken off. I think so much in the US, mostly because seems like in Canada, they the breeders really worked with animal nutritionists early on to work with farmers who were you know, had pigs and so on. That that fit into their system and there was a lot of education there and I don’t think that that happened so much in the US I think also in the us a lot of you know, rejected malt barley ends up as feed and so…
Jerry Clark 09:17
So so in the U.S. right now that market would primarily be for for human consumption on the naked barley side than than for a agricultural commodity, so to speak for for the feed industry. So…
Brigid Meints 09:30
Jerry Clark 09:30
Okay. That helps. Thank you. Yeah, Lucia anything on the Wisconsin side where you’re seeing acreage expanding or anything like that.
Lucia Gutierrez 09:37
I think that there is a lot of interest. One of the things that I really like about this project is it’s involvement with you know, all of the stakeholders and the different groups that have an interest in the food area in the in the uses of feed and in the malting and brewing and in Wisconsin, we have a lot of potential there. We have a very high interest of having some barley more locally sourced with all the breweries. And I think that’s a potential market that is fantastic. So if we can bring it back and have more acres, that would be great. We still need, you know, we have away ahead that we need to pave until we can have it very good and good for disease resistance and stuff like that. But then there is also this new market on the food industry that we’re very interested in and we’re working here with Julie Dawson, also at the University of Wisconsin Madison in the horticulture department and she’s the extension specialist and, and she’s we have been working together on having this baking try out and so we partnered with Madison Sourdough and we have been doing some testing and baking tests for this especially the grain that came from this project to see if there is interest from the bakers and the consumers on having some more products. And we did some pizza trials and pita bread tryouts and some cookies. And there was a fantastic reception to see that, you know, we don’t want to release something that is not going to be ready for the market. And so we’re working together. We’re in close partnership with them so that we can have something that we like that is economically performing well, but also that will be received by by the bakers. In this case, the Brewers feeding industry and also the public.
Carl Duley 11:42
Jerry, I don’t know about you, but I’m a little disappointed that we weren’t invited down for the cookie tasting part of this project.
Jerry Clark 11:47
Yeah, where was the donut trial or something?
Lucia Gutierrez 11:52
We’ll be sure to include you in the next one!
Carl Duley 11:54
Okay, we need to we need to get on that list. Now, are most of these varieties are we talking spring varieties, winter varieties or a little of each?
Lucia Gutierrez 12:06
We’re evaluating both. So the first focus was on some facultative that would be able to withstand that, you know, at a regular winter, not a Wisconsin winter. And spring, to me spring, we had the first two years, it was very devastating the winter trials or the winter, or facultative, didn’t survive. And those were very harsh winters. This past winter, we had great success. And this was mainly we changed, we selected some of the lines that Yeah, we knew they were not going to do well in Wisconsin and then some that showed us small promise that we cannot even wait fully in previous years we decided to ever wait them. And this was a good year. So we had a fantastic survival and we had actual yield harvested this year from fall planted trials. So we’re excited that we can also go that way.
Carl Duley 13:06
Well, Oregon really doesn’t have winter do they?
Brigid Meints 13:11
It’s a different type of winter, a lot of gray, a lot of rain. So we do fall planted barley really well here on the west side of the Cascades because we don’t get that those cold temperatures and so we actually prefer to grow the fall planted barleys because typically the spring types we will need to irrigate. And so we can benefit from those rains with the fall planted and don’t need to irrigate.
Carl Duley 13:43
Now, there are a couple other states involved. Could you mention who they are? And…
Brigid Meints 13:48
Yeah, so we also are partnering with the University of Minnesota and Cornell. And so we’re really lucky to have all four states representing For the Pacific Northwest, the upper Midwest and the Northeast. And we also have made our trial available to other states who are interested. And so we had some interest from UC Davis, they grew one of our trials. And then we’ve had some international interest as well. So that’s been pretty fun to see these varieties growing all over the world.
Carl Duley 14:27
So you mentioned mentioned food, and well, we all we all know about beer and animal feed. So what what are the main products you’re looking at within the food industry? Is it mostly baking or what’s the focus on as far as food.
Brigid Meints 14:47
You know, it’s a range of things and I would recommend that your listeners go to our website, so we have an E organic website for the project because this last spring We released a barley-zine that has some information on the project as well as I think about 10 to 12 recipes that some of the collaborators on the project as well as local chefs and bakers, mostly from Oregon, because that’s where we produced it. But we have, you know, recipes ranging from barley porridge bread to crackers to barley tempeh. That’s a really interesting and cool use of fermented product from barley. We have roasted barley tea, which I know Pat is a huge fan of. Let’s see, what else do we have in there, a barley salad, that’s a really popular use of like the whole grain product.
Carl Duley 15:55
So far, the projects focused on organic is anybody looking at growing Naked barley conventionally or non organic, I should say whatever the correct term is.
Lucia Gutierrez 16:06
No, we don’t have any conventional growers right now. The main focus of project was on organic and that’s what we’ve been focusing but there is no reason why you couldn’t grow them conventionally.
Carl Duley 16:21
Well, the main reason I asked is our biggest challenge with the whole malting barley project has been dealing with Fusarium and DON and we struggle even with the chemistry out there to keep DON levels low enough. How’s it been, hows it been the DON levels in what you’ve grown Lucia in Madison area.
Lucia Gutierrez 16:43
That’s the huge main problem for growing barley with fusarium and we had blight and DON levels. So we have had a high pressure in master trials. We do have some lines that show more promising response and lower levels of DON and actually the the grain that we use for baking those we had to dry it down enough. So to be able to bake it and we were able to find some of them growing with low levels of DON so some of the lines seem to be primary thing and then there are some minor adjustments that he can do to lower the level of DON.
Carl Duley 17:29
What what is the level of DON acceptable in the baking industry or the food industry? Any we have a wheat weed killer that they’ll accept up to two but I was wondering but they blend it so…
Brigid Meints 17:45
You know the food barley industry doesn’t have a lot of standard so I’m not sure that there’s a specific level for food barley, they may just be using the same level that’s acceptable for malt. I’m not sure I mean, we don’t have fusarium yet in Oregon, and so it’s not something that I deal with.
Carl Duley 18:07
Brigid Meints 18:09
But I don’t know, Lucia?
Lucia Gutierrez 18:13
I’m pretty sure it’s 1.2 or 1 we tried to have it below one. But yeah, I don’t know for sure sorry.
Carl Duley 18:21
Oh not a problem not a problem I just because that’s kind of my working on this project for quite a few years on malting barley, it’s, it’s still one of my biggest frustrations is how do we how do we get the levels down low enough and organic provides some special challenges to that. I will say that our winter barley trials have been much better we haven’t had the naked barley winter varieties but we generally are down to levels where we can sell it in winter barley but and so there may be some promise there if you can get them winter hardy enough to to guarantee a crop At least most of the time, that would be great. That’d be great.
Brigid Meints 19:06
And you know, the literature suggests and we haven’t quite seen this come to fruition but because the naked barley loses its hole in the field and a lot of the DON is supposedly accumulated in the hull. There may be lower levels with naked barley, but you know, that depends on a number of factors, including how well that grain threshes and whether that’s really the case in you know, the specific varieties. And so one of the things that we’d like to look at is one of our larger panels, and sort of go through it and see if we can find different levels of resistance.
Carl Duley 19:58
Sure, sure. One I did see some we had a grower that grew a little, you know, a half acre of one of the one of the varieties last year of the naked barley spring barleys. I don’t know what variety it was, but he still had a quite a few grains in there that had hulls on what is what is the percent that you’d normally get that’s truly naked or hulless and in what do you do with it? If it’s a you try to separate that out? Or, or how do you go about? Is there a processing method you go through to knock those halls off or?
Brigid Meints 20:34
Yeah, so threshability is actually one of the things that we’ve sort of come to realize needs to be a major focus when we’re breeding naked barley. And so that trait seems to be both genetically and environmentally controlled and along with the genetic by environment interactions. So we do see some lines that will come out of the combine and then even later the cleaner and have most of their hulls still attached. And so you can, you know, use your fingernails to pop that kernel out, but that’s not going to work if you’re trying to sell it in like a bulk bin at a co op. Um, and so…
Carl Duley 21:24
It’s kind of like shelling out of hickory nuts in the wintertime.
Brigid Meints 21:27
But worse! And then we have other varieties that you know, 100% of the kernels will come out without a hull. And so yeah, we can we can breed for that, which is really exciting. But we do seem to see that the moisture levels at harvest also affect the threshability. So the drier the or the lower the moisture, the better it threshes.
Brigid Meints 22:00
Then if you get a lot that has a lot of hules in there,
Brigid Meints 22:06
you know that that becomes an issue. We do actually work with a processor here in Oregon that ends up semi-purling their naked barley. So it’s a really light pearl.
Brigid Meints 22:18
But we still would love for them not to have to do that because that additional processing stuff can cost them money.
Brigid Meints 22:27
As I mentioned before, you are removing some other components and so it’s not quite a whole grain. But again, they sell into bulk bins, and they don’t want their customers having to deal with hulls every so often. And so, breeding for that threshability is is really going to be especially important for the food market.
Carl Duley 22:56
Sure, sure. Will de-bearder, knock a lot of those off or not, if you ran it through?
Brigid Meints 23:02
Yes, to an extent. Again, that depends on the variety. So some of the hulls are more like papery and brittle and some of them just are never going to come off unless you really just like beat the heck out it.
Jerry Clark 23:22
So, so you mentioned the, the labeling part or it’s not a whole green after that process. So is that devalue, I’m thinking as a farmer, say I want to try growing this here in Wisconsin, and I know worked with Lucy on some other projects to get the agronomy part of it down. But you know, in extension, we always talk about have your marketing plan up front, before you dive into a new crop or anything like that. So um, you know, and if there is a failure, you have to sell it for cow feeder, cattle feeder, whatever and you don’t get that premium price, but Is that that labeling or that, you know, no longer a whole grain? Is that dockage or whatever that price huge when that happens, or if it would happen? Or how do you suggest a farmer look into that marketing part that? Well? Am I going to be able to get, you know, 100% of my crop, hulless or naked barley? It’s not going to have any hole left on it and I don’t have to worry about it or is there other tricks to the trade to make this, you know, work better in a farmer’s favor?
Brigid Meints 24:36
You know, that’s a good question. But I’m not sure that I have a very good answer for that because I think you know, there isn’t like with wheat, you have a set price, but there really isn’t. That doesn’t exist for naked barley. The market just isn’t big enough and honestly I almost wonder, you know, most of the barley that you see in the grocery store is purled. And so, and there are farmers who actually contract pearled barley. And I’m not sure what the price point difference is there. But I think there’s probably a larger market for pearled barley right now than there is and that some of that may be an export market. But I would guess there’s a larger market for pearl barley than there is for naked barley. I don’t know, Pat. Looks like he’s unmuting to maybe chime in on that.
Dr. Pat Hayes 25:45
Yeah, I just throw out a couple of marketing options out there is that to my knowledge, one of the big and exciting markets for naked barley is Japan that there is a tremendous enthusiasm for naked barley food products in Japan. And so particularly in South Idaho, and parts of Washington State, there’s been a big push on barleys to meet that particular market, those tend to be high Beta Glucan barleys. And so that’s a topic that we can segway into, if you like, is beta glucan content, because our efforts have typically been directed at kind of more modest Beta Glucan levels. The other one is just purely anecdotal. But I had heard that a whole lot of Midwestern covered barley was going into pet food of all things. And so that would be classic you know, six row malt barley six row feed barleys. And that pet food market had emerged as a significant one for those. So that would be another option for naked is there.
Carl Duley 26:47
Yeah, I can respond a little we have a miller in our county that they buy some barley and it’s all pearled and it’s all for pet food. And they flake some of it for, but none of it’s for the human food industry. So I imagine maybe that could take away a step if they didn’t have to pearl it. What about what about the yields yields comparison to other barleys close, or as good better?
Brigid Meints 27:16
You know, the hull accounts for about 10 to 13% of the kernel. And so you are going to see a reduced yield if you’re planting you know, two similar varieties side by side, you do make up for that in the test weight. So test weight of naked barley is equivalent, more or less to wheat. But that being said, most breeders have not been focusing on naked barley. Because the food market is is quite low. And so there hasn’t been a lot of breeding done focusing on yield. And so yeah, most of the current varieties are not going to out yield hulled varieties, even when you account for that 10 to 13% difference, but that isn’t to say that it’s not possible. We have naked breeding lines that yield equivalent to or in some cases out yield our covered checks.
Lucia Gutierrez 28:31
Here in Wisconsin, we have seen the same. So what Bridget was explaining, yes, because there was not like on convention, on the covered barley, there was a lot of breeding efforts put into higher yields and also adaptation, not mal-adaptation. So when you do that you have a premium and you improve the crop and get higher yields. Because we haven’t done that in naked barley. We haven’t seen same the level of yield just yet. But there is no constraints that we know of that would prevent us from getting into high yielding. Once we start the breeding efforts, and once we we start to evaluate them in this type of environment and put more pressure there. We should be able to move it forward.
Carl Duley 29:21
Alright. Jerry? Oh, I thought you were saying something
Jerry Clark 29:26
Oh. No, yeah. Well, I was since we’re going down that agronomy track a little bit here. So it’s planted very similar agronomically. With with grain drill, combined with harvested with a combine, everything in between, are, are fungicides typically, well, excuse me, we’re talking organic for the most part. So we’re really not, but from a fertility standpoint. Is that mainly using manures or crop rotation legumes? How is the production practice? This is Wisconsin, we’ve got a lot of dairy manure. And this might be a fit for a dairy farmer to, you know, add add a different crop into a cropping system coming off of alfalfa and these kinds of things from the dairy industry or using using manures. But I’m assuming you got to be careful with that that nitrogen rate.
Lucia Gutierrez 30:20
So yes, and and no, depending on the market where you’re sending it, right. The main limitation with nitrogen with barley is if you’re going to be selling it for the brewing industry, where we have a maximum level of protein that we can have and therefore then the nitrogen levels are, are very critical. So we have to be very careful. For the food products. That’s not such a constraint. So that shouldn’t be a big issue. In terms of the rotations that we have been using. In our at the University of Wisconsin, we have certified organic land and and the first year we run it on a rotation that was not so favorable and it was coming out of another cereal. But after that we changed to coming after alfalfa and this were beautiful and proper fields and the barley did fantastic. So, um, so so we did not need to supplement any nitrogen with that, just out of that rotation.
Jerry Clark 31:22
So from an input standpoint, I’m sorry, go ahead Brigid.
Brigid Meints 31:26
Oh, I just wanted to mention one thing because you mentioned that you know, it would be drilled and harvested the same way you do if you are growing naked barley and you want to maintain your germ. So for sprouting, or malting or seed, one thing to think about is that the embryo is quite a bit more exposed than on a hulled barley or covered barley and so adjusting combine settings is going to be really important. The embryo is pretty fragile, and it’s pretty easy to pop off. And, and so unless you’re selling into a market where it doesn’t need to sprout, in which case you can, you know, use your combine as you would with a covered barley. As with planting, you want to make sure that your germ is high. And typically, I would probably recommend going a bit higher seeding rate on a naked barley because there there do tend to be some issues with germination and vigor, which is something that we’re also working to breed for. But currently, we do see some naked varieties have have lower vigor.
Jerry Clark 32:49
Dr. Pat Hayes 32:49
I was going to come back to the nitrogen management bit just a sec is that in our particular environment, that’s really a challenge because we lack appropriate rotations. Just because of our rainfall and so forth, and certainly in our research farms, unfortunately, we don’t have the opportunity like Lucia to follow after a legume. And so we’ve been kind of locked up a bit into input replacement. And so then using certified organic sources of exogenous fertilizer, and that’s clearly not economically valid. So in the bigger picture of things, we really need to be operating within an entire organic system that then involves the supply of nutrients and then also will help us get a better grip on weeds. Because weed competition and so forth is just absolutely essential. And a lot of our research work, just because we have small plots and so forth just makes it really awkward and we’re not able to do the same kinds of things that growers might be able to do. So weed competition is certainly an important one and, and I know Briged and Lucia and the graduate students have spent like a lot of time trying to assess that. It’s it’s hard to get a grip on
Carl Duley 33:59
Is there a protein level that the food industry would like you to shoot for higher, the better? I know the first year that we messed around with malting barley, we had no idea what we were doing. And we followed. We had, they’re all dairy farmers and they threw manure on it. And we had 18 and a half to 19% protein. And nobody’s interested in that stuff. For animal feed, I mean, it’s great, but the food industry, where would they like proteins be in that, or doesn’t it matter?
Lucia Gutierrez 34:27
So, so again, because it’s a new product, I think that there is not like the standard where on where this very clear cut where you want to have it. It’s also you know, barley, it’s not gonna bake like a wheat. So so you’re looking for alternative alternative baking products and not bread just because of the gluten. And so so so I think that it’s more flexible at this point and there is not a hard set line of where they want the product. At yet.
Brigid Meints 35:01
You know, because there are no set standards. You can get a bag of barley flour and it could have 8% protein, it could have 18% protein and there’s no regulation on that. And so, you know, one of the things that we’re trying to do with this project is and with our serial chemist and graduate student here is do some food functionality testing, and food quality testing. So looking at, you know, the lines from these trials, not just the ones that were grown here in Corvallis but also the grain from from Wisconsin and grain from New York and grain from Minnesota, and we don’t have enough of all of those things to do all the full testing but we will get some food quality traits measured on all of those. And then where there was enough grain, we’ll have more functionality testing that will allow. We’ll be able to write up descriptions for these varieties that tell bakers or chefs you know if you get this variety, this is how it might perform when used as a portion of a bread, or in a pita or in a cookie, for example.
Carl Duley 36:32
Lucia mentioned the word gluten. Can you talk a little bit about gluten levels in the the naked barleys?
Brigid Meints 36:40
Yeah, so barley does have gluten. The proteins are called her hordeinleins and hordeins I believe rather than glutenons but it forms the same sort of gluten structure as in wheat, but barley contains less of it and it’s a slightly different protein. So it doesn’t form the same gas trapping properties that the wheat gluten does. And so you can’t make a risen loaf out of 100% barley flour, it will rise and then collapse. And so there are, you know, some traditional recipes that call for, I think 100% barley flour and they sort of resemble a little brick.
Carl Duley 37:32
I was just gonna say that’s how all my bread looks when I bake. But it’s uh…
Brigid Meints 37:37
Um, and so you know, really good bakers can, can use up to, you know, 50-50% barley flour. I probably wouldn’t recommend, you know, I myself as a very amateur bread baker, I probably wouldn’t push it beyond like 10 to 20. Bucks for non risen baked products you know, I’ll make 100% barley flour cookie. For things like muffins or scones I’ll probably go up to about 50% and likely lower than that. Unless you’re a really experienced baker.
Carl Duley 38:24
Well, if I remember right, i came to Oregon a number of years ago and they had some oh soft pretzels made out of if I remember right out of barley that were pretty good, but that was also paired with some pretty good beer and mustard. So I don’t know if that I think they all have to be taken into account. You know, we’re, we’re getting close to wrapping up. Is there anything that Lucia, Brigid, Pat, that you’d like to share? I do want to ask you all a little bit is what’s your what’s your vision for this? Not sorry, the project but and you don’t have to divulge any secrets, but what’s your vision for where naked barley is heading and how fast or whatever?
Brigid Meints 39:08
So, you know, one of the things that we didn’t really talk about today was using naked barley for malting and brewing. And so currently, that isn’t really something that’s done. There are a few craft maltsters that are malting naked barley, and it’s being used really more as an adjunct, or in very small quantities by some brewers. But I think it’s a potential and use that really hasn’t had a lot of exploration done. So there are some researchers that have have started looking at it and then either due to lack of funding or lack of the correct variety hasn’t really gone very far. And so I think, you know, there are some challenges. Certainly the hull does provide a natural filtration system for brewing. And it does protect that little growing shoot. But there are ways around that. And there’s new growing technology that may allow for successful brewing with naked barley. And, you know, one of the exciting things with naked barley is that that hull doesn’t contribute to potential alcohol. And so within that kernel, you see a higher level of what’s called malt extractor. That’s sort of the potential alcohol that can come out of that kernel. Whether that’s actually realized in a brewing system is sort of yet to be determined. But there there are some some things about naked barley that could make it exciting for maltsters and brewers.
Carl Duley 40:59
How about Lucia?
Lucia Gutierrez 41:01
Yeah, as far as where we see this, that I’m excited to see more barley in Wisconsin, I’m excited to see more naked barley in Wisconsin, I think that the place for naked barley would be more or less a specialty crop and it’s not, you know, to become a commodity. So it will be for those products that would add value. And so I think that with that in mind, if we work on the agronomics to make sure that it’s gonna, it’s going to be able to be grown here. And then we work with the industry to make sure that we do have a market I think that there is tremendous potential. So it’s, we have a long way still to have, you know, this final product but I think we do have now products that are working and, and I think that is just moving forward then in getting it more adapted to Wisconsin and working in partnership with it with the market is what’s gonna get it out there.
Carl Duley 42:06
Pat your vision?
Dr. Pat Hayes 42:08
Yeah. So, Brigid and Lucia, I think have really covered the the really important and obviously key agronomic and production considerations I would just throw out that the that the naked barley has also prompted us to consider ways that we can reach out to genetics, plant breeding science, teaching all the way from universities to K 12. And, in fact, this OREI project that we have has an outreach component where we use both naked and uncovered barleys to demonstrate key concepts in breeding and genetics. So that’s an important one and then the other bit of it is that for the home gardener who wants to raise some barley covered barley is sort of problematic because it is covered And you can’t necessarily eat it directly and you can’t really malt at home unless you are willing to go the extra mile. And so we have a resource called the Oregon naked barley blend, which is a mix of 700 plus different naked barleys that are of all sorts of different colors and types and shapes and forms. And we’ve sent that all over the world to people who can then raise their own naked barley make their own selections, and it’s really satisfying to suddenly realize that you’re a plant breeder and if you’d like you can name the new variety after your grandchild or your mother in law or whatever strikes your fancy.
Brigid Meints 43:38
And that blend is available in 100 gram packets if you would like some, you can go to barleyworld.org/ONBB , and my email address is on there. And you can request a packet and I will put it in the mail for you.
Carl Duley 43:57
Oh, cool, and then in eight to 10 weeks you’ll get it once it hits the mail. That’s probably a little more political than I should have went. I did you sparked when Brigid talked about malting you sparked one other one other thought that I had is is reading more and more about people that are interested in malting malted grains for cooking baking, whatever it has if you’ve done anything with with the malted naked barley and baking or cooking or?
Brigid Meints 44:30
A little bit so, um, you know, we have done some baking with malted barley flour, there’s a shortbread recipe that may be on our website and is in the barley zine that I think calls for 20% malted barley flour. So that does add some natural sweetness. There’s also been a little bit of work done on on malted barley syrups But I think, um, you know, that’s still an area where there could be a lot more exploration.
Carl Duley 45:10
So maybe the next three years, I won’t push you anymore, and we’re gone. So, Jerry, anything else that you…
Jerry Clark 45:18
No, I’d just like to thank the guests, but if there’s specific resources that you have that you could share with us, you know, as we post the podcast, we will have a link to a bunch of resources for the naked barley topic. So please send those along to us and those that are listening, go to our cutting edge website, and we will, those links will be there under that naked barley topic. And you can we just appreciate all those any resources you have that we can share with our listeners. Sure.
Carl Duley 45:52
Yeah. And I’d like to thank all of you for attending. This is this was super a lot of fun. I think we mentioned this when Pat was on before with our just our malting barley podcast, someday maybe we’ll all get together and and have either pretzels or cookies made out of naked barley. We look forward to it,
Brigid Meints 46:14
as well as the naked barley beer.
Carl Duley 46:16
Yes, yes. No doubt. All right, there we go
Dr. Pat Hayes 46:20
Here on the cap, you see barley flavors.
Carl Duley 46:23
Dr. Pat Hayes 46:24
Last the loaf and the hands.
Carl Duley 46:28
All right, and you’re gonna send us a complimentary hat aren’t you Pat?
Dr. Pat Hayes 46:31
It’s all coming your way.
Carl Duley 46:33
All right. Great. Thanks again. We really appreciate this. Thank you.
Brigid Meints 46:39
Thanks for having us
Jerry Clark 46:40
Thank you so much. (music)
JASON FISCHBACH 46:56
Brought to you by the University of Wisconsin- Madison Division of Extension.