If you are opening a bakery and will be serving cornbread, corn muffins, or other baked goods containing cornmeal, then it's important you have a general understanding of the corn milling process. Inquisitive customers will invariably ask you obscure questions about the ingredients used in your baked goods, and when they do, you want to be able to answer them with factual information.

To better understand the process of milling corn, here's some information for you:

The Two Methods of Corn Milling

Corn is milled using either a wet or a dry process. As the names imply, corn that is wetly milled is soaked in water, as the first step in its milling process while dry-milled corn skips this step and is processed dry.

Typically, corn used for baking and other food applications is drily milled while corn used for the production of ethanol and corn oil is milled wet. The dry-milling process is much cheaper and creates less industrial waste products than the wet-milling process.

Stone-Ground Corn Milling

The most common dry way to mill corn for food products is to grind it whole. Since this process uses large grinding wheels made of natural stone, it is referred to as stone grinding. 

Prior to the grinding process, the corn kernels are removed from the cobs and cleaned to remove any dirt or other contaminants from the field. Once cleaned, the kernels are ground between two large stones (one stationary and one that rotates). The larger-diameter pieces of ground corn produced are sold as cornmeal while the fine powder is sold as corn cones. Corn cones are used by food manufacturers to make items such as breakfast cereals and frozen pizza crusts.

When you purchase stone-ground cornmeal or corn cones for your bakery's products, you are purchasing products ground whole that still contain both the corn hulls and germs, so they are healthy for your customers.

Stone-ground cornmeal and cones are typically produced using white corn instead of yellow corn. White corn is preferred for grinding because its kernels are much sweeter and their hulls are much softer than yellow corn hulls.

For Additional Questions

If you have additional questions about how the corn products used in your bakery are processed, you should speak with a food supplier such as Dover Corn Products LTD. They are happy to answer any questions you may have and to find out any additional information you need to ensure you utilize their corn products with confidence in your new bakery.