Canaryseed - ©

Canaryseed No Longer Just For The Birds!

Health Canada has just certified a long-known seed crop as fit for human consumption. It’s gluten-free and, according to a food scientist who’s worked on the stuff, it has a pleasant aroma and a nutty flavour when roasted. It can be used in many baking applications. Have you guessed yet?

Canary Grass - © america.pinkA Canaryseed farmer checking his crop. The Canarygrass plant, which produces
Canaryseed, can grow up to 6 ft. / 2 m in height.

It’s Canaryseed!

You heard me: Canaryseed. And it’s being touted as an exciting new alternative for the Gluten-intolerant. It can be roasted and used whole, ground into flour or, with a little work on the techniques, pressed or puffed into cereals or snack foods.

The Canaryseed Development Commission of Saskatchewan is, predictably, overjoyed. The Health Canada ruling will almost certainly open up huge new markets for the product it represents. A marketing campaign is already under way.

Did you know?

  • Saskatchewan grows a huge amount of Canaryseed already. In fact, it’s the world’s leading grower and exporter of Canaryseed.
  • Canaryseed resembles Sesame Seed and is being touted by its fans as a lower-cost substitute for the relatively expensive imported commodity.
  • Canaryseed is not named for the bird that often feeds on it, but for the Canary Islands where it originated.
  • Canaryseed was first grown in Canada back in the late 19th century at Indian Head Saskatchewan just east of Regina.
  • Canaryseed is richer than other common gluten-free foods in fatty acids, vitamins, fibre and protein content.

So watch for the emergence of Canaryseed on the ingredient labels of your favourite Baked Goods, Snacks and Cereals. And keep an eye out for it raw, roasted or ground into flour at your favourite Health Food or Bulk Food store!

~ Maggie J.