The International Working Group on Whole Grain Definition(s) is pleased to announce that the definition for what constitutes a Whole Grain Food has been approved and endorsed by ICC, the HealthGrain Forum, and the Cereals & Grains Association. The working group tasked with developing the definition set out to reach consensus on definitions for both whole grain as a raw material and what constitutes calling a food ‘a whole grain food’.

These definit​ions are needed to ensure that all global stake​holders (academia, industry, public and government agencies) have shared standards and criteria that enable them to achieve scientific compliance. Agreement on definitions also brings greater transparency for consumers whose trust has been eroded by foods with small amounts of whole grain described as a whole grain food.​

Through the Whole Grain Initiative (WGI), experts from academia, government agencies, and industry from around the globe have collaborated to develop a single definition. The group took into account widely accepted definitions and regulations as well as new developments. The whole grain food definition outlines criteria to use the term ‘whole grain’ in the product name and criteria to highlight the presence of whole grain.

  • Definition of a whole-grain food: ​A whole-grain food shall contain at least 50% whole-grain ingredients based on dry weight.
  • Requirements for designating ‘whole grain’ in the product name front-of-pack: Foods containing a minimum of 25% whole-grain ingredients based on dry weight, may make a front of pack claim on the presence of whole grain but cannot be designated ‘whole grain’ in the product name.
The International Working Group’s definition, including additional information and guidance for its use, can be downloaded from the WGI Webpage.​

For further information, please contact the WGI Working Group Chair: Jan Willem van der Kamp, jan-willem.vanderkamp@tno.nl ​