Our monthly summary of how you can make the most of your Whole Grains Council membership.

WGC April 2017 Member Newsletter
Dear Oldways Whole Grains Council members,

Your statistics and surveys can help the WGC build momentum for whole grains while also drawing attention to your brands. If your company has access to recent statistics about whole grain trends or consumer attitudes that can be made public, we can use this information to more effectively promote whole grains on our website and in media interviews. 

Contact Caroline ( caroline@oldwayspt.org) if you have any reports or surveys -- or even small teaser excerpts -- you can share. We'll credit your company as we spread the word. 

Don't Forget to Fill Out Our Member Survey and Help Us Plan Our Next Conference!

Last week we asked you for feedback to help us understand which projects and resources would be most beneficial to you, our members. There's still time to send us your thoughts! We'd love you input on the following topics:
  • Our Fall Conference - As we jump into the planning stages of our Fall 2018 Whole Grains Conference, we want to hear from you what you'd like to learn and who you'd like to meet.
  • More WGC Benefits and Resources - We're interested in hearing your ideas for how we can help increase visibility for your whole grain products. Do you use the whole grain resources available on our website? Are there resources you wish we offered? Are there challenges in your business that we might be able to help you navigate?
It just takes a few minutes to fill out our survey. We appreciate your time and your opinions. 
The  Huge Success of Whole Grain Sampling Day 
Thanks so much to all the members who helped make our sixth annual Whole Grain Sampling Day fun, informative and impactful this year! We had more participation across the country than we've ever had before, with more than 200 sampling events happening at grocery stores, restaurants, and universities nationwide. For an overview of the day's activities, be sure to check out our interactive map

Many of you also participated online through social media with pictures, recipes, and giveaways -- it was so much fun to see how creative you got with your messaging. We hope that you enjoyed it as much as we did! Read about some of our favorite parts of the day on our blog and then mark your calendar for next year's event, happening Wednesday, March 28, 2018.
Caroline's Tip: Remember to Register Any Products Whose Serving Size Had Changed

The FDA recently adjusted their Reference Amounts Customarily Consumed (RACCs) for various categories of food and we know that many manufacturers are in the process of adjusting their serving sizes to align with these new RACCs as they update their Nutrition Facts Panels to comply with new regulations. Changes in serving size generally mean a change in the amount of whole grain contained in one serving, which means a change in the gram amount on your Whole Grain Stamp. 

As you update your labels and packaging, be sure to reregister your products for Whole Grain Stamp use! Fortunately, since many of the RACCs have increased, we expect many of your products to qualify for larger whole grain gram amounts, bringing even more marketing value to your Stamp. 
Use Our New Whole Grain Resources in Your Marketing

Several members asked us to put together some resources they could share with their customers that would explain the health benefits of whole grains and introduce them to the variety of grains available. We jumped on the task, creating colorful, informative PDFs you can use at your next trade show or sampling event or even on your website. Contact Kelly (kelly@oldwayspt.org) if there are other topics you'd like us to explore!

Join Us in Celebrating International Mediterranean Diet Month

May is International Mediterranean Diet Month and whole grains are an essential part of the Mediterranean Diet Pyramid along with fruits, vegetables, legumes, fish, nuts, and olive oil. If you sell whole grain foods like pasta, artisan breads and crackers, or intact grains like spelt and farro, May is the perfect month to give your social media and marketing efforts a Mediterranean spin. 

Our sister program, the Oldways Mediterranean Foods Alliance, has created a fun quiz, along with a selection of graphics and Tweets so that you can easily feature Med Month in your communications. Check out these great resources:
Contact Lara Bertoia, Mediterranean Program Manager, with any questions -- lara@oldwayspt.org or 617-896-4880.
Caroline Sluyter
Stamp Program Manager

Kelly Toups, MLA, RD, LDN
Program Director

Cynthia Harriman
Director of Food and Nutrition Strategies

... and from all of the Oldways and Whole Grains Council staff
Oldways is a nonprofit food and nutrition education organization inspiring good health through cultural food traditions and lifestyles. The Oldways Whole Grains Council is only one of our many successful programs. Check out our website to learn more