At its existing mill in the River North Art District (RiNo) of Denver, Colorado, Ardent Mills is investing in new capabilities that will directly support The Annex by Ardent Mills (The Annex).

The company announced on May 22 that its Denver Mill will be able to clean and pack intact grains, pearl barley, and dehull heirloom grains like emmer, einkorn, and spelt. This will help farmers looking to bring these grains to market and customers who want to incorporate them into their recipes.

“Our first year has been wrapped in innovation,” says Shrene White, Director of The Annex, which celebrated its one-year anniversary recently. “We have listened to our customers, worked closely with our farmers, and evaluated the future of the markets we can serve. Through the organic-certified mill, we are helping our customers bring these grains to life by serving as their source for dependable, food-safe, high-quality intact grains.”

The move is in response to rapidly increasing customer demand in segments such as artisan baking, brewing and distilling, food service, and retail foods. Customers are seeking a connection to heritage traditions and ingredients, food safety certification, and product consistency and purity.

The Annex will look to service those needs through the mill, which will produce and clean food-grade, organic and non-GMO grains and sell them nationwide in 25- and 50-pound bags and totes.

“As more and more farmers are willing to grow these grains, milling becomes the next important step to get them to the marketplace,” says Kelly Whitaker, chef and co-founder of Noble Grain Alliance. “Noble Grain Alliance and our hospitality group are committed to the restoration of heirloom grains to Colorado and we are excited to see the development of the Denver Mill to help advance our work and the work of so many others into the future.”