Wheat, any of several species of cereal grasses of the genus Triticum (family Poaceae) and their edible grains. Wheat is one of the oldest and most important of the cereal crops. Of the thousands of varieties known, the most important are common wheat (Triticum aestivum), used to make bread; durum wheat (T. durum), used in making pasta (alimentary pastes) such as spaghetti and macaroni; and club wheat (T. compactum), a softer type, used for cake, crackers, cookies, pastries, and flours. Additionally, some wheat is used by industry for the production of starch, paste, malt, dextrose, gluten, alcohol, and other products.


The nutritional composition of the wheat grain varies somewhat with differences in climate and soil. On an average, the kernel contains 12 percent water, 70 percent carbohydrates, 12 percent protein, 2 percent fat, 1.8 percent minerals, and 2.2 percent crude fibres. Thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, and small amounts of vitamin A are present, but the milling processes removes most of those nutrients with the bran and germ.

Majoritatea grâului folosit pentru alimente necesită prelucrare. Boabele sunt curățate și apoi condiționate de adăugarea de apă, astfel încât miezul să se rupă corect. La frezare, bobul este crăpat și apoi trecut printr-o serie de role. Pe măsură ce particulele mai mici sunt cernute, particulele mai grosiere trec la alte role pentru o reducere suplimentară. Aproximativ 72% din boabele măcinate sunt recuperate sub formă de făină albă. Făina obținută din întregul sâmbure se numește făină graham și devine rânceda cu depozitare prelungită din cauza conținutului de germeni-ulei reținut. Făina albă, care nu conține germenul, se conservă mai mult timp. Boabele de grau inferioare și excedentare și diverse subproduse de măcinare sunt utilizate pentru hrana animalelor.

Most wheat used for food requires processing. The grain is cleaned and then conditioned by the addition of water so that the kernel breaks up properly. In milling, the grain is cracked and then passed through a series of rollers. As the smaller particles are sifted out, the coarser particles pass to other rollers for further reduction. About 72 percent of the milled grain is recovered as white flour. Flour made from the whole kernel is called graham flour and becomes rancid with prolonged storage because of the germ-oil content retained. White flour, which does not contain the germ, preserves longer. Inferior and surplus wheats and various milling by-products are used for livestock feeds.

The greatest portion of the wheat flour produced is used for breadmaking. Wheats grown in dry climates are generally hard types, having protein content of 11–15 percent and strong gluten (elastic protein). The hard type produces flour best suited for breadmaking. The wheats of humid areas are softer, with protein content of about 8–10 percent and weak gluten. The softer type of wheat produces flour suitable for cakes, crackers, cookies, and pastries and household flours. Durum wheat semolina (from the endosperm) is used for making pastas, or alimentary pastes.

In our country, wheat participates in small quantities in animal feed, because only grains with low bread quality and wheat crumbs are used.

The quality conditions (SR ISO 7970: 2001) require that the wheat has a color from light yellow to reddish yellow, normal taste and without nonspecific odors, foreign bodies of maximum 10%, of which the inert ones are less than 0.5% , and the seeds of other defective crops of 5%, as well as moist gluten of up to 18%. Pest infestation is also not allowed.

Feed wheat used in pig feed can be incorporated in proportions of 15-25% in combined feed, having a good influence on meat and fat. It is administered coarsely ground, because if it is used in the form of flour, the digestibility decreases due to the formation of agglomerations that reduce the surface of exposure to digestive juices, and can cause ulcers.

Forage wheat is advised to be used mainly in the feeding of chickens, with a participation of 10-25% in the structure of the combined fodder, because it maintains and stimulates production. As in the case of barley, the use of wheat and triticale in the diet of monogastrics is limited by the presence of antinutritive factors in significant quantities, such as pentosans represented by arabinoxylans.