|13 January 2016|

An ancient grain grown in the Northern Isles and the Outer Hebrides holds the secret to a healthy new Scottish oatcake, according to new research.

Bere, a crop which is grown in Orkney, Shetland and areas of the Outer Hebrides, has been used to create a uniquely tasting Stockan’s Oatcake which offers a useful range of micronutrients.

The company, believing that Beremeal would offer significant nutritional benefits, was keen to develop a new and exclusive Scottish product that would be unique to Orkney. Research was needed to confirm the nutritional content of the flour and the acceptability of a new oatcake made using the special island ingredient.

Research conducted by Queen Margaret University’s (QMU) Scottish Centre for Food Development and Innovation has shown that the oatcakes made with Beremeal have a high fibre content. Specifically, the Beremeal flour used in the recipe offers high levels of vitamin B1, folate, iron, biotin, phosphorous, magnesium and iodine.

Dr Laura Wyness, from Queen Margaret University, explained: “Folate, iron, iodine and magnesium are often found to be at low levels amongst some population groups, so anything which can boost the intake of these micronutrients amongst the UK population is a positive step.”

Moira Cairns, business development manager from Stockans, said: “Our company is well known for our Orkney Heritage and we were delighted to work with Queen Margaret University to develop a new oatcake.  We have sourced our Beremeal, made from a traditional Orkney grain, from Barony Mill, which is awaiting confirmation of  ‘Orkney Beremeal’  gaining Protected Food Name status.  We are delighted with the unique taste, flavour and nutritional benefits of our Stockan’s Orkney Beremeal Oatcake.  With much interest already shown from our customers throughout the UK, we are looking forward to its launch at The Scotland’s Speciality Food Show in Glasgow 24-26th January 2016.”