Ireks sees ‘superfood’ demand in UK as it launches chia seed bread mix

By Oliver Nieburg

- Last updated on GMT

Chia seeds are considered a high source of omega-3
Chia seeds are considered a high source of omega-3

Related tags Salvia hispanica

German baking ingredients firm Ireks has launched a new chia seed bread mix for the UK that it claims will appeal to British consumer demand for “superfoods”.

Chia seeds have been gaining a lot of attention in recent years as a source of omega-3.

Maurice van Tongeren, head of sales international at Ireks, told “Superfoods do well in the UK…Everybody is looking for a new superfood and chia is the new superfood.”

Not many chia breads in UK

Chia (also known as Salvia hispanica​) is a summer annual herbaceous plant belonging to the mint family that develops seeds. It has been classed as a superfood, a term used to describe high-nutrient foods.

The seeds were approved in 2009 as a novel food in the EU for bread products containing up to 5% chia, but were recently extended​ to 10% for baked products.

Ireks ‘Chia Bread Mix’ will be sold in the UK but the mix is expected to be rolled out in other countries in the future. “It’s going to be a major one,” ​said van Tongeren.

Lee Pugh, Ireks UK sales manager, added: “There aren’t many products using chia seeds in the UK market currently, but it really is an amazing ingredient and, above all, tasty too.”

Allied Bakeries has a Sunflower & Chia Seed bread under its Burgen brand that it launched in the UK in April last year.

Omega-3 source

Chia seeds have been described by Australian supplier The Chia Company as the highest plant-based source of omega-3.

Van Tongeren said that manufacturers producing bread using Ireks’ mix could claim on the packaging that the product was 'high in omega-3'.

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