Moulton Mill is supporting a research project to help Ethiopian farmers as well as creating new products thanks to grant
A mill which is nearly 200 years-old is taking part in a research project which will help boost the economic prospects of Ethiopian farmers.
The stones at Moulton Mill will be in action to try out the teff grain, reported to be the next super food, which could create a new export market for farmers in the African country.
Mill Manager Janet Prescott says that teff products, which are gluten free, will have health and environmental benefits for the public.
Mrs Prescott, who says the mill is also working with other universities on research projects, said: “There is a group of growers in Ethiopia who do not have any export market at the moment and this opens up those export markets.”
Volunteers at the mill are also hoping to end a difficult year on a positive note with the introduction of a new sieve thanks to a £34,500 lifeline grant from the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund.
Over the last year, the mill has only been able to generate just 20% of its normal revenue due to limited visitor numbers as a result of restrictions.
The charity has spent around £148,000 over the last three years on maintenance projects for the building, which needs around £15,000 a year to remain open.
Mrs Prescott said: “I know it has been a difficult year for everyone but this grant is a lifeline for us.
“We have a core group of volunteers and I would like to thank everyone for their support.
“Our focus is on making sure that we still here after COVID.”
Currently the mill is only able to produce wholemeal flour but the introduction of this new sieve, which will cost in the region of £15,000, will allow it to branch out into new products such as white flours and porridge oats
Mrs Prescott said: “It will take a big chunk of the money but the difference will be that we could do all types of flour.
“During COVID people’s enthusiasm for flour and homebaking increased and we have seen an uplift in our flours through the mill shop and we want to do more of that.
“We are grateful to Moulton Post Office during the first lockdown as they offered to stock our flour so we could continue to sell it.”