Maize is another word for corn, the tall-growing grain that produces yellow kernels on long ears. Maize is more commonly used in Britain than in the United States to talk about corn, but most Americans recognize the word. Sweet maize is the variety that tastes the most delicious — other kinds of maize are grown as grain to feed animals. The word maize comes from the Spanish maíz, or corn, and both the word and the grain itself moved north from Central and South America into North America, where it became the continent's largest grain crop.


The small brown or white seeds produced by a grass plant that are a major food source in many countries, or the plant itself, which is grown in warm, wet places. Roughly one-half of the world population, including virtually all of East and Southeast Asia, is wholly dependent upon rice as a staple food; 95 percent of the world’s rice crop is eaten by humans. Rice is cooked by boiling, or it can be ground into a flour. It is eaten alone and in a great variety of soups, side dishes, and main dishes in Asian, Middle Eastern, and many other cuisines. Other products in which rice is used are breakfast cereals, noodles, and such alcoholic beverages as Japanese sake.


Millets were probably first cultivated in Asia more than 4,000 years ago, and they were major grains in Europe during the Middle Ages. Today, though they are used chiefly for pasture or to produce hay in the United States and western Europe, they remain important food staples in less-developed countries worldwide.


A hardy annual grass that is widely grown for grain and as a cover crop. France and the French feature very prominently in Rye’s history. Rye's history can be traced back to before the Norman Conquest, when, as a small fishing community, it was almost surrounded by water and lay within the Manor of Rameslie. The name of Rye is believed to come from the West Saxon ieg meaning island. Medieval maps show that Rye was originally located on a huge embayment of the English Channel called the Rye Camber, which provided a safe anchorage and harbour.


An Old World cereal plant with a loose, branched cluster of florets, cultivated in cool climates and widely used for animal feed. Oats date back about 32,000 years when wild oats were hand ground by paleolithic hunter gatherers. There are many wild oat species, but only four have been cultivated for today's use. The species Avena sativa is on grocery store shelves. Avena byzantina and Avena strigosa are for animal feed.


A hardy cereal with coarse bristles extending from the ears, cultivated especially for use in brewing and stockfeed. One of the first cultivated grains of the Fertile Crescent, barley was domesticated about 8000 bce from its wild progenitor Hordeum spontaneum. Archaeological evidence dates barley cultivation to 5000 bce in Egypt, 2350 bce in Mesopotamia, 3000 bce in northwestern Europe, and 1500 bce in China.


A cereal which is the most important kind grown in temperate countries, the grain of which is ground to make flour for bread, pasta, pastry, etc. The cultivation of wheat was started some 10,000 years ago, with its origin being traced back to southeast Turkey. Wheat originated in the “cradle of civilization” in the Tigris and Euphrates river valley, near what is now Iraq. The Roman goddess, Ceres, who was deemed protector of the grain, gave grains their common name today – “cereal.”
parallax background

We have 30 years of experience

Read more