UK millers follow a series of rigorous guidelines and testing procedures to ensure that the wheat they buy and the flour they produce is safe to be eaten.
Every load of wheat arrives at the mill with certification on important legislative and food safety requirements and which millers seek before purchasing. These include, but are not limited to:
Flour millers only purchase wheat from assured sources, such as Red Tractor or Scottish Quality Crops. For wheat to be classed as being from an ‘assured’ supply it must be grown by farmers who adopt best practice, keep traceability records, and who are independently audited.
Transport and storage
All wheat brought to the mill must have been stored and transported, at all times, in accordance with industry codes of practice.
Wheat testing at mill intake
All wheat is checked for food safety hazards when it arrives at the mill. Loads that do not comply will be rejected and investigations are carried out on farm where serious food safety issues are found.
Testing throughout the milling process
Millers apply HACCP (hazard analysis, critical control points) systems throughout the milling process to remove all hazardous material.
Additionally, millers undertake in-house and independent monitoring of residues of pesticides, other possible agricultural contaminants and bacteria.
Testing before it leaves the mill
Flour millers undertake routine testing of the flours they produce to monitor physical and chemical qualities but most importantly the functionality for the relevant application. Many flour millers have onsite facilities that mimic plant bakeries so that they can test the performance of the flour.
For more information on the testing applied to grain and flour please see our booklet: