RYE CONSUMPTION AS FOOD

Many different types of rye products are used daily in the Nordic countries. Today, after several decades of diminishing rye consumption, the increased knowledge of the relationship between diet and well-being has raised the consumers interest toward rye. In addition, the cereal industry is actively developing new and innovative rye products especially in the Nordic countries.

Although the total production of rye has diminished, its use as food for humans has increased slightly during the 1990s. In 2003, the food consumption of rye in the world was about 6 million metric tonnes, which is about 42% of total production. The rest was used as feed.

Generally, during the last few decades, rye consumption has decreased in countries, where its consumption has traditionally been high, and has increased in countries, where the consumption has been low. It can be assumed, though, that the growing public awareness of the role of diet for our well-being, the increased knowledge of the nutrient content of foods, and the improved attitudes toward healthy eating will change the situation.

The research on rye and its positive effects on health has already raised interest within the cereal industry. Several innovative rye products have become available, and the consumers' interest in rye is increasing.

Annual Rye Consumption as Food in the World and in Some Individual Countries

Area/country

Rye Consumption in kilograms/capita

1985 1990 1995 2000 2003
World
Poland
USSR
Former USSR
Finland
Denmark
Sweden
Norway
Germany
Netherlands
Canada
USA
China
1.8
56.8
8.4

20.4
20.4
14.8
8.9
21.6
1.0
0.5
0.2
1.0
1.2
32.4
3.8

17.7
18.4
11.7
9.2
14.4
3.2
0.5
0.4
0.8
1.4
32.0

12.1
15.8
15.5
9.0
7.4
12.5
1.2
0.5
0.3
0.5
1.0
36.1

8.9
15.7
13.2
12.7
7.2
10.7
1.8
0.5
0.3
0.2
1.0
35.3

8.9
14.8
18.2
12.4
7.1
10.7
1.0
0.6
0.3
0.1

                                             (FAOSTAT data 2006)
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