Quarter Acre of Live Wheat, Combine Coming to National Mall

September 3, 2010 Bookmark and Share

A live wheat field, approximately one quarter of an acre in size, will sprout from the streets of the nation’s capital Sept. 23 and 24 as part of an effort by the wheat industry to educate lawmakers and citizens alike about the crop’s life cycle from farm to fork.

This Urban Wheat Field, to be held at 3rd Street and Maryland Avenue SW in the shadow of the U.S. Capitol building, will be the second such event put on by the Wheat Foods Council, a grower-funded and grower-governed organization dedicated to nutrition education.

As at the first event, held in New York City in 2008, experts in the areas of wheat production, milling, baking and nutrition will guide visitors to the Field through each phase of the grain’s life cycle, engaging them in hands-on activities and demonstrations along the way.

Exhibits will include:

  • A maze of wheat, grown in pallets by personnel at the University of Maryland, Central Maryland Research and Education Center and narrated by growers from around the country on hand speaks to the growth, harvest and economic impact of wheat in the U.S.
  • A full-size combine from Case IH.
  • Demonstration mills and hand grinders visitors can try themselves.
  • Bread and cookie samples made with Ultra-Grain flour in the Nebraska Wheat Growers Association’s self-contained mobile baking lab.

Additions to the experience since the 2008 event will include live baking demonstrations; a recreated grocery store aisle showing the diversity of wheat foods; and presentations from registered dietitians on nutrition facts labels, proper serving sizes and the differences between whole and enriched grains.

NAWG will host an opening reception and ribbon cutting the morning of Sept. 23 for Members of Congress, their staffers and agency officials. Guided field tours for Congressional staff will also be available throughout the event.