From The Field Direct To Your Table
One of the questions we are often asked is how our flour mill process works. Because we are a locally owned and operated family company, we love to engage with our customers and explain the process. So let's walk you through everything from start to finish to reaffirm that when you buy your flour from Nelstrop, you are purchasing what we believe to be the best quality flour for your baking needs.
Stage 1 - We Take Delivery of The Grain From Our Approved And Quality Tested Suppliers
To become an approved supplier to Nelstrop involves a stringent application process. We want to ensure that we only ever use the best ingredients in our flour, which is the first stage of our process. Even though we have high expectations from our suppliers, we still undertake further procedures designed to check the quality and the provenance of the wheat before moving on to the next stage. We can trace the origins of all of our English grain back to the farms where it was grown.
Stage 2 - Making Sure The Grain is Pure
To check on the quality of the grain, we sieve all of it, as during the harvesting process, it is easy for the combine harvester to collect tiny seeds, stones or bits of hay in addition to the grain. The sieve will remove the stones and small seeds. We then blow air through the grain that remains as this removes the straw leaving behind 100 per cent pure grain, which is now suitable for milling.
Stage 3 - We Add Water To The Grain
Our flour-making process takes time and cannot be sped up, as we simply are not prepared to make any compromises on the quality of our product or our time-proven methods. The next stage involves moistening the grain with water and then leaving it to stand for anything between eight and twelve hours. The length of time is dependent on how hard the grain initially is; the harder it is, the longer it needs to soak. Another benefit of buying Nelstrop flour is that the water we use as part of this process comes directly from our mill's borehole, thirty meters below the ground. Our flour benefits from using water direct from the Cheshire Aquifer.
Step 4 - And So The Grinding Process Begins
Grinding is probably the part of the milling process that most people associate with flour production. Now that the grain has been moistened, we pass it through a set of stones that are designed to remove the very outer layers of the bran from the grain. Now the naked grain is passed through a set of "Break" mills, which releases the inner parts of the grain.
Step 5 - Sieving
The penultimate part of the process involves sieving all parts of the grain into different sizes. The largest parts of the grain, which need to be broken down further, are put through another "break" mill. The remaining smaller parts of the grain are then ground down to produce flour. This process is repeated until the flour is designated to be at the required standard.
Our High-Quality Flour Is Completes Its Final Quality Checks Before Being Distributed
Now that the flour process is complete, all that is left is for it to pass the final quality checks before it is packaged and sent to our customers. All our flour is 100% natural, unbleached and suitable for vegans. Our flour is packed into recyclable paper bags from a Forest Stewardship Council source.
We quality check every batch of flour and also employ a resident baker at the mill who regularly bakes sourdough, all of the different bread types, cakes, pizzas, biscuits and everything else that our products are used for just to ensure that the high standards for which we are renowned are maintained. 200 years of family milling goes on!
View Our Full Range Of Flour Here >