Ancient grains are a group of grains that have been grown around the world for centuries, they are grains that have changed little over time and not been altered by selective breeding, which is different from modern varieties such as corn, rice and wheat. These grains include spelt, quinoa, millet, barley, teff, oats, emmer, farro, buckwheat and chia.
Some of these grains have grown in popularity as we look to eat more healthily and also some, including quinoa, teff and millet are gluten free so are a good alternative for people who need to eat a gluten free diet.
These ancient grains have a long history in farming, the Aztecs used chia seeds, the Greeks and Romans grew spelt, farro is mentioned in the old testament and millet was grown in china thousands of years ago.
There are benefits to farmers prepared to try and grow these grains as they are often a crop that will grow well as they are hardy and can be grown in a variety of climates, also as demand increases form consumers there is the possibility of entering a niche market that is likely to grow. However there are also issues with growing such a crop such as variable yields and costs involved in equipment.