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Wholegrain food

(June 2016)

Wholegrain food is any food which uses every part of the grain including the outer layers, bran and germ.

This definition applies even if these parts are separated during processing and regardless of whether the grain is in one piece or milled into smaller pieces.

Under the Food Standards Code Standard 2.1.1 the term wholegrain refers to: the term wholegrain refers to:

  • whole and intact grains as found in some bread and crisp breads
  • puffed or flaked grains in some breakfast cereals
  • coarsely milled or kibbled wheat found in breads such as pumpernickel
  • ground grains such whole wheat flour used to make wholemeal bread.

The term wholemeal applies to foods in which the whole grains have been refined into finer particles. This gives manufacturers the option of describing their foods as either wholegrain or wholemeal to avoid misleading the customer.

Wholegrains are an important part of a healthy diet. You can find more information about wholegrains in the Australian Guide to Healthy Eating and the New Zealand Ministry of Health Eating and Activity Guidelines for New Zealand Adults.

Page last updated 6 December 2023