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

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

Did you know that one bushel of wheat can make 60 loaves of whole grain bread, but only 42 loaves of white bread? Or that ancient grains, like millet and teff, are more tolerant of extreme weather conditions than many other crops? As many consumers look for more sustainable options at mealtime, whole grains certainly fit the bill! 

If you're looking for some eye-catching statistics about whole grains and sustainability to share on social media or on your website, check out our new infographic, Whole Grains: A Sustainable Food.

The Whole Grains Council Plans for 2017  

Our mission to get more whole grains to more people marches on in 2017, with:
  • New Stamp Launch. Our 50%+ Stamp went live in the US on January 17th and will continue to roll out to more countries and more products in coming months. We are so excited to see how much interest and momentum there is for this new marketing tool. Keep reading below for an overview of this improvement to our beloved Stamp program!
  • #SampleWholeGrains: Whole Grain Sampling Day. On March 29, 2017 restaurants, grocery stores, college dining halls and food manufacturers all over the country will be sampling out scrumptious whole grains and joining us on Twitter and Instagram to celebrate! See details below to get your company involved. 
  • Good Grains for a Good Cause: Whole Grains Month 2017. The Whole Grains Council spends every September campaigning for whole grains on social media and in the press. This year we will also be encouraging people across the country to vote for their favorite food-related charity to receive cases of whole grain food donations from our members! Stay tuned for more information on how to participate. 
  • Whole Grain Themes for 2017. Each year we choose a few themes and messages we think are particularly important to pushing the whole grain mission forward. You'll see these ideas popping up in our blogs and social media posts throughout the year -- and we encourage you to mirror these themes in your communications too!
    1. Whole grains are a tasty part of everyday diets.
    2. Whole-grain-based meals are the foundation of sustainable diets.
    3. Whole grains are an affordable way to eat healthy.
Our New 50%+ Stamp... Coming to Grocery Stores Near You!   
 
We officially launched the new 50%+ Stamp for US products on January 17th and more than 2,500 US products currently qualify to carry the new Stamp on their packaging. Many of you are already hard at work getting all your qualifying products' packaging updated with the new graphic and we can't wait to see the 50%+ Stamp begin to pop up on grocery store shelves over the next few months. Remember that in order to potentially qualify for the new Stamp, all products registered before May 2015 must be updated to include a Total Grains calculation -- reach out to us if you think your products might need updating!

If you have any questions about the new Stamp, or if you would like help identifying your qualifying products and getting the new graphics onto your packaging, please contact Caroline Sluyter at 617-896-4832 or caroline@oldwayspt.org.

Click here for a full overview of the new 50%+ Stamp program.
Caroline's Tip: Updated 2017 Stamp Usage Guide

If you're using the Whole Grain Stamp in the US, start the new year with a careful review of our Stamp Usage Guide. We've updated it to include information about the 50%+ Stamp and we've clarified a few other points to bring it completely up-to-date for 2017.

We offer different Stamp Usage Guides for Standard US products, FSIS products, Canadian products, and products sold outside the US and Canada (available in multiple languages), so make sure you download and read all the guides that are relevant to your company's products!

How is Your Company Planning to Celebrate Whole Grain Sampling Day, March 29, 2017?

Give away a product every hour... pass out free samples to commuters headed to work... or release a brand new whole grain product! We want
you to be a part of our nationwide Whole Grain Sampling Day party. Click here to learn more about how manufacturers like you can get involved and check out this list of ideas for events and giveaways that go beyond social media.

Tell us your plans so we can add your company to our list of partners -- the sooner you sign up, the more free promotion and publicity we're able to send your way! To participate or get more details, contact Kelly Toups at 617-896-4884 or kelly@oldwayspt.org.

Participating in Whole Grain Sampling Day is fun, easy and rewarding! But don't take our word for it -- here's what some of our members have said about the event in past years:

"It was really fun and a pretty minimal amount of work. Our fans really enjoyed it and it was a great way to showcase some products they might not have heard of before." - a WGC member who offered numerous social media giveaways

"We had such a blast with Whole Grain Sampling Day yesterday! The samples flew out of our hands and before I knew it, we were out. The FB contest went super well -- lots of great interaction from folks. And the winners I chose sounded super excited when I told them this morning." - a WGC member who did live sampling and a Facebook contest
Caroline Sluyter
Stamp Program Manager

Kelly Toups, MLA, RD, LDN
Program Director
kelly@oldwayspt.org 

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
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