When we think of November, we think of fall, harvest and, of course, Thanksgiving. But before we start carving the turkey on our Thanksgiving table, let’s take a minute to “toast” another food item that is consumed year-round all over the world: bread.
November is National Bread Month.
Bread has played an integral role in our history. From our Stone Age ancestors making the earliest forms of bread, to the bread shortage and famous words of Marie Antoinette that sparked a revolution to some of our favorite dishes consumed today. It is no wonder it receives a month of recognition every year.
In honor of one of our favorite foods, we thought we would share our 10 favorite (wheat) facts about bread. After all, we wouldn’t have bread without wheat. That’s why National Bread Month means one more reason for us to be thankful.
NWF Top 10: Favorite (Wheat) Facts About Bread
- Evidence indicates that wheat was baked to make bread in 6,700 B.C. by Swiss lake dwellers. That’s over 8,000 years ago!
- A bushel of wheat yields 73 loaves of bread.
- U.S. wheat farmers grow enough wheat to produce 146 billion loaves of bread annually. U.S. wheat farmers produce an average of more than 2 billion bushels of wheat per year.
- One acre of wheat can produce enough wheat to furnish a family of four with bread for nearly 10 years.
- It takes 9 seconds for a combine to harvest enough wheat to make about 70 loaves of bread. We know our wheat farmers are out in their combines for much longer than 9 seconds. U.S. wheat farmers work hard to feed the world.
- Kansas, the top wheat producing state, produces enough wheat each year to bake 36 billion loaves of bread. That’s enough for the world population break bread together for 2 weeks.
- Assuming a sandwich was eaten for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, it would take 168 days to eat the amount of bread produced from one bushel of wheat. It’s a good thing wheat is used to make cereals, pastas and other foods you can enjoy for all meals throughout the day.
- Hard Red Spring wheat is one of the most popular types of wheat for making bread products, including hearth breads, rolls, croissants, bagels and pizza crust. There are six classes of wheat: Hard Red Spring, Soft White, Hard Red Winter, Soft Red Winter, Durum, Hard White.
- Hard Red Winter wheat is another wheat used to make bread products, such as pan breads, hard rolls and flat breads. Because of its versatility and excellent milling and baking characteristics, Hard Red Winter variety is also used to make Asian noodles, cereal and general-purpose flour.
- Soft Red Winter wheat is used most often to make bread-family products like crackers, pretzels and flat breads.