IAOM education
Participants in the IAOM–KSU Introduction to Flour Milling course weigh flour in a lab exercise in the Shellenberger Baking Lab. Photos courtesy of IAOM.
MANHATTAN, KANSAS, U.S. — Fourteen people new to the industry learned more about the milling process during the Introduction to Flour Milling course presented by the International Association of Operative Millers (IAOM) and Kansas State University (KSU).


The course was Jan. 15–19 at the IGP Institute in Manhattan, Kansas, U.S.

“It gives professionals in the milling industry with little or no milling background an excellent understanding of what goes into producing flour, starting with growing wheat and ending with baked products,” said Shawn Thiele, course instructor and IGP’s flour milling and grain processing specialist.

The course focused on topics including wheat classes, uses and basic wheat chemistry; wheat cleaning and conditioning; gradual reduction process; calculating flour extraction to maximize mill profitability; milling flowsheet terminology; specifics in the milling process; flour and dough testing practices and methods; flour functionality; wheat and flour blending; and the impact of grade, quality characteristics, and mill performance on flour extraction.

IAOM education
Shawn Thiele, course instructor, leads a hands-on milling exercise in the Shellenberger Milling Lab during the IAOM–KSU Introduction to Flour Milling course.
“It was great to be able to learn what I didn’t understand before about sifting out all of the different particles of kernels,” said Monty Griffin, course participant and senior project manager at Bunge North America in St. Louis, Missouri, U.S. “I thought this course was a lot of fun. It was the right amount of material and information, and gave me a greater knowledge of the complexity of what goes behind the process from the beginning to end.”


Through the presentations and hands-on workshops led by KSU faculty and staff, participants learned all aspects of the flour milling process from wheat selection to flour blending and functionality. These hands-on experiences were completed in the Shellenberger Hall Milling Lab and the Hal Ross Flour Mill on the KSU campus.