Whole Grain Connection

Whole Grain Connection

The Whole Grain Connection

WGC California Whole Grain logo

WGC Whole Grain logo

Welcome to the Whole Grain Connection.
We are a non-profit organization based in California, aiming to enhance the desirability and availability of whole grain breads and other whole grain products from organically and sustainably grown grains and thereby connecting farmers and bakers.
We hope you will visit our website often for our latest website publications and activities. 
Contact information:
Attn: Monica Spiller
Whole Grain Connection
500 West Middlefield Road #2
Mountain View
California 94043
e-mail: barmbaker@aol.com
Telephone: 650 938 2865

What is whole grain?
Whole grain wheat is the same as wheat seed. If it is a genuine unbroken wheat seed you can soak it and sprout it. The end of the seed that produces the sprout is the germ. The thin, colored seed skin is the bran, which is tasty, edible and a necessary part of food; it is fiber and it carries other foods all the way through the digestive system without being itself digested. The middle endosperm of the wheat seed or grain is filled with starch and protein which is the store of food for the new wheat sprout. The growing plant can only use this food store if the vitamins, minerals and other plant nutrients are provided by the bran and germ. Similarly, people can only use the starch and protein from wheat properly if they also eat the germ and bran at the same time, since these supply the needed nutrient helpers for proper digestion and use for growth and energy.

Whole grain Sonora wheat photo

New in November 2015

If you are a regular vistor to this site please consider becoming a member of the Whole Grain Connection. We now have a MEMBER application page, and invite you to join us. When you are a member you will automatically be on our e-mail mailing list.
Elizabeth Birnbaum has created a delightful photo description of the millstone dressing workshop given by Roger Jansen, with Larry Jansen and Doug Mosel, in September 2015. Please find the link in the MULTIMEDIA section.
Also added to the website are our two logos. Please find the links at the top of the HOME page and click to view them. 
At last the USDA Bulletin #24 written by M.A. Carlton in 1900 has become available. You can search for it on-line, but we have now included it in the CATALOG page of this website. This bulletin gives a very useful overview of the different climate regions in the USA and the types of wheat that are appropriate. It is also interesting to see how confident breeders were even then that they could create a wheat  to fit any circumstance.
New recipe: Focaccia is an Italian style bread similar in some ways to ciabatta, but also used to make a deep dish pizza. A recipe is included in the RECIPE section
In MULTIMEDIA section, please find the transcript for a talk given by Monica Spiller to SPOOM (Society for the Preservation of Old Mills) members visiting the Harden Foundation Wind Machine, Salinas, California, November 7, 2015.


Whole Grain Connection has been marketing organic whole grain products for farmers, using a "tm" designation for our "certification mark". We have added a "Grown & made in California" logo to this certification mark. Products are now being sold with this new mark, which you'll recognize by the California poppy art and the font. The beautiful California poppy artwork is by Margo Bors, an artist from San Francisco.

We can approve products for the use of this logo and prepare label designs for other farmers selling their organic whole grains. Please contact us for further information.

Phytic acid

Phytic acid is an important factor in whole grain foods, because it binds with nutritionally valuable minerals in the grain, and reduces their usefulness. Fortunately the enzyme phytase is also present in wheat and this will break down the phytic acid quite rapidly if the conditions are optimized.

Phytic acid and whole wheat flour - a discussion

Spelt and Emmer

We have continued to work with landrace spelt and emmer varieties suited to the Coastal and Sierra Foothill regions of California. 

Letter to spelt and emmer growers May 2013

From our archives
We've been in the news. 

Mountain View Voice. January 27, 2012

San Francisco Chronicle. January 3, 2012


For the Farmers:

Knowledge of the fungal diseases that attack grains leads to good organic prevention practices.

Click on the link below to read about Preventing Fungal Disease on Wheat, written by Monica Spiller in 2009. This was an exercise in understanding the problems from the viewpoint of the organic farmer. As with all our work at the Whole Grain Connection, this is an ongoing project, always waiting to be updated or corrected. The information was gleaned from many on-line sources and in particular from Integrated Pest Management for Small Grains, Publication 3333 of the University of California, Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources.

Preventing Fungal Disease on Wheat