Hazelnut Growers of Australia representatives went to the Australian Nut Conference in March this year. Largely the conference is for industry middle men – agents, buyers, processors and marketers. It was still a useful conference for growers wanting to understand how the rest of the industry works and see what is coming up as issues for the larger nut industries. This year it was pasteurisation, which peanuts and almonds are or have implemented to reduce risks. In the near future this may be an issue for smaller producers and smaller nut industries like hazelnuts.
I was blown away by the nutritional benefit of nuts. I knew they were good but hearing the presentation from the pre-eminent nutrition researcher on heart health, Prof. Sabate, I was struck by how my family and all those that I know should eat more nuts. A ten year large population study conducted in Spain showed that 30-50% reduced incidence of dying of cardiovascular disease if you ate a handful (30g) of nuts 3-5 times a week. After five years the effect was so dramatic against the control group that they stopped the trial as they felt it was unethical to continue with people’s health at risk. They wanted the control group to be able to eat nuts too. More information on the Nuts for Life website including how nuts are good for weight management and diabetes too. Nuts are a great source of protein and so convenient and tasty for snacking it’s so easy to add a few more handfuls to the diet to benefit your health.