Sep 3rd, 2017 | Category: Community, Features
by Mary Vermillion, Grow Northwest
Research labs don’t typically draw crowds. But when the subjects are wheat and grains that promise the revival of a piece of Skagit Valley’s agricultural heritage, you’re bound to develop a following. And sooner or later, you’re going to need a bigger lab. Such is the case for Washington State University’s Bread Lab in Burlington, which in August celebrated the grand opening of its 12,000-square-foot facility at the Port of Skagit with more than 400 in attendance.Led by Dr. Stephen Jones, The Bread Lab is equal parts research facility and test kitchen, combining science, culinary art and innovation to advance the use of whole grains. Jones and WSU graduate students work with local farmers, bakers and processors to identify wheat, barley, buckwheat and other small grains that perform well in the field and have the best flavor and nutrition for baking, cooking, malting, brewing and distilling.
The new facility, which includes labs, a milling room, meeting spaces, a professional kitchen and the King Arthur Baking School, makes that possible.
By doubling its footprint, the Lab can “do more than one thing at a time. We can be teaching in one room, doing research in another,” Jones said.
Lab’s community-based agriculture.