Nov 7, 2015 by Lee Hart

Tip your hat (and spoon) to a great pulse crop in 2016

Pulse Canada is on the ball. They sent me food in the mail.

As part of the promotion announcing that 2016 has been declared the International Year of the Pulses (IYOP) by the United Nations, PulsePulse image small Canada sent me an information package and it included a granola bar. Not just any granola bar — a Canadian built granola bar made from Canadian-grown pulses – specifically peas. And it was good.

I get a fair number of news releases in the mail, but wait, what’s this? This envelope is a bit more bulky, feels like a free gift inside. And there it was, a Megabite Pulse Bar.

The bars were developed by Pulse Canada in collaboration with Sara Lui, a Product Development Manager at the Saskatchewan Food Industry Development. Pulse Canada wanted to create a product that would meet consumer interests for a healthy, low calorie, low fat snack. (These fibre-rich bars will fill you up. And, as a true sign of a good snack, I ate my Megabite bar and then was hoping there was a second (maybe even a third or fourth).

“Megabite definitely lives up to its name, packing a whole lot of goodness into a 30g format,” says Pulse Canada. “The final formulation contains seven pulse ingredients: green lentil flakes, pea protein, pea flour, pea hull fibre, black bean flakes, red bean flakes, and red lentils. Of course, the new bar has just the right texture too – not too chewy, not too crumbly.”

As Megabite is a prototype product, you can’t buy it in stores, but Pulse Canada has been serving it at events across Canada.

I got my Megabite bar, now do your part and produce or cook some pulses this year, and maybe you’ll get one too. For more information and to find out how to participate in IYOP visit the Pulse Canada website at: www.pulsecanada.com .

The International Year of the pulses is promoting production and consumption of peas, beans, lentils and chickpeas. Canada is the world’s largest exporter of peas and lentils. I am not a marketing expert, but one analyst told me recently the yellow pea market looks particularly promising this year. India had some very dry conditions affecting its chickpea crop yields. When they can’t get chickpeas they substitute with yellow peas…so there’s you’re marketing tip for the day.

Over the years writing about pulse crops in rotation, I hear that pulses always bring that little extra something to the soil nutrient table. Some of them can be finicky to grow. One farmer told me once his peas fall over as soon as they hear the combine start. But if you can find the type or variety that grows well in your area they can be very profitable, and they always enhance the soil.

And after the field, you bring them into the kitchen and they’re great in everything from baked beans, chickpea salad, lentil and pea soup and hundreds of other uses. And now — they can even be configured into an excellent granola bar.

Not that I can be swayed by gifts or food, but if Canada Beef, Canada Pork, or chicken, turkey or lamb producers want to stuff an envelope (or cooler) with something, I will put down my chickpea chowder and say something nice about them too.

Lee Hart is a field editor for Grainews in Calgary, Contact him at 403-592-1964 or by email at [email protected]

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lee Hart

Lee Hart


Lee Hart is a long-time farm writer, and honorary member of the Alberta Institute of Agrologists, with many observations on the agriculture industry, who never hesitates to admit he is wrong (should that ever happen.)


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