Sprouts, the Super Veggies
Since the ‘70s sprouts have been a popular addition to sandwiches, salads, and other dishes. But they are also a source of potent nutrition.
The process of sprouting seeds causes increased activity of hydrolytic enzymes, increased bioavailability of certain essential amino acids, B‐group vitamins, zinc, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, and other important minerals by breaking down anti-nutritional inhibitors found in un-sprouted seeds and grains.
USDA scientists and others have tested commercially available varieties of tiny young plants like sprouts and found that on average they contained more than 4 times the vitamins and carotenoid antioxidants of their mature plant counterparts. Plus, sprouts add delicious flavor and crunch that enhances the sensory aspect of any meal. So sprouts are a true "Super Food".
Despite all of their benefits, sprouts grown the traditional way had problems. Since 1996, the FDA has investigated over 48 outbreaks associated with traditionally grown sprouts that resulted in:
- 2,499 cases of illness
- 179 hospitalizations
- 3 deaths
Major retailers chose to “disappear” traditional sprouts from the produce aisle to protect their customers.
But shoppers protested saying, “We still want our sprouts!”
What’s a poor grocer to do?
The Traditional Sprout Problem
Traditional sprouts are grown in bulk drums at room temperature, “the temperature danger zone”, where pathogens can flourish. They are then subjected to excessive tumbling and handling that can introduce contaminants. Pathogen levels in the traditionally grown sprouts typically rise over ~5 log units in the growth phase.
The Rä Nanoshoot Solution
Rä Foods LLC, in conjunction with the Vista Institute, turned away from the old risky sprout growing methods and developed the new patent pending COLD GROWN process to grow sprouts in cold conditions that cause an actual pathogen die-off.
They replaced the 50-gallon bulk drums by planting the seeds directly in 3 oz. retail packages so that from planting to the plate, the sprouts remain alive, growing, and completely untouched.
In repeated independent laboratory trials using inoculated samples, the patent pending COLD GROWN process was shown to produce an actual die-off of Salmonella and E. coli populations, on the order of a ~3 log decrease. Those are the two organisms primarily responsible for food safety issues with traditional sprouts.
When it comes to the differences between Nanoshoots and traditionally grown sprouts, there is just no comparison.
- Planted and grown quietly in individual 3 oz. packages
- Pathogen growth prevented by patent pending COLD GROWN® process
- Uses only 1/4 cup of water per package with no waste
- Undisturbed in the package until opened at home, with a longer shelf life, natural seed caps, & occasional un-germinated seeds Read More
- Occasional fuzzy root hairs; evidence of living, growing plants Read More
Traditionally Grown Sprouts
- Germinated and tumbled in high volume rotating drums
- Incubated in warm, damp conditions that promote pathogen growth
- Produces excess waste water that requires disposal
- Moved from drums to bins to washers to dryers to packers; handling that can introduce contaminants, promote spoilage and a shorter shelf life
- No evidence of growth once packaged
The Rä Food rebels made up the term “Nanoshoots” to set them apart from those “other” sprouts. The word “nano” is derived from the Greek νᾶνος (Latin nanus), meaning "dwarf". But in more common usage it just means “small”. Coupled with the word “shoots” to describe the first growth of the germinated seed, Nanoshoots were born.
Into The Great Wide Open
So Rä Nanoshoots are stepping into the space left vacant by traditional sprouts, and millions of trendy, health-conscious foodies will be celebrating the news that the “sprout drought” is over.