Food Processors Focus on Dry Peas at NCI Marketing Short Course

Fargo, N.D., USA -- Twelve food processors and importers from Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam are at Northern Crops Institute (NCI) this week to learn more about the use and marketing of dry pea-based ingredients in food products. The course is co-sponsored by USA Dry Pea and Lentil Council.

“USA Dry Pea and Lentil Council (USADPLC) is pleased to once again team up with Northern Crops Institute in order to educate food processors and distributors on the uses of pea flour and pea fractionates in processed foods,” says Pete Klaiber, USADPLC Director of Marketing. “By bringing Southeast Asian industry members to NCI, we have been able to introduce them to experts in the field.  Courses like this one will help us achieve our goal of increasing consumption of U.S. produced peas, lentils and chickpeas worldwide,” he concludes.

Eighty-eight percent of the 2010 U.S. dry pea crop was produced in the four-state region of North Dakota, Montana, Minnesota and South Dakota.  The cool, dry growing season of the U.S. northern tier is especially well suited for growing pulse crops.  U.S. production of dry peas, lentils, and chickpeas has more than doubled in the past decade.

Course topics include dry pea breeding, quality evaluation, nutrition and milling applications; contracting specialty crops; functionality of dry pea flour, protein, starch and fiber; Asian and vermicelli noodle processing; baking and pasta processing with pea flour; use of dry peas in food products; and sensory evaluation of pea-fortified products.  

Speakers for the course are Clifford Hall, Ph.D., NDSU Dept. of Cereal and Food Sciences; Thunyaporn Jeradechachai, NCI Crop Quality Specialist; Kevin McPhee, Ph.D., NDSU Pulse Breeder; Frayne Olson, Ph.D., NDSU Extension Service; Dilrukshi Thavarajah, Ph.D., NDSU School of Food Systems; and Mehmet Tulbek, Ph.D., NCI Technical Director.

Lectures are supplemented by hands-on experiences in NCI’s analytical, milling, baking, pasta and extrusion processing laboratories. The participants also toured SK Food International’s processing facility in Moorhead, Minn., and their head office in Fargo.