Dakota Datebook

Bread Week

Friday, October 12, 2012

 

North Dakota is well known for its wheat production. In 2012 alone, North Dakota farmers harvested 7,760,000 acres of wheat – only Kansas had more acreage. Measured in bushels, North Dakota’s total wheat harvest was 339 million bushels! Now, that’s a lot of work—and a lot of wheat. Soon to be a lot of flour!

Wheat has long been an important crop for the state. On this date in 1937, it was reported that Governor Langer reflected on this when he effectively told North Dakotans to eat cake…and whatever other pastries and breads they could. All of these goodies were preferably to be made with homegrown wheat flour. It was all in celebration of “Bread Week,” which Langer proclaimed from the 11th to the 17th of October.

His proclamation read, “Throughout the ages bread has been known as the staff of life. It continues today as one of our most important foods, being widely recognized as a basic part of a well-balanced diet. Wheat farmers, wheat millers and bakers of North Dakota represent a highly important part of the industrial life of our state. … In order that the people of North Dakota may be well informed of the true place of baked wheat foods in the diet and may join in recognizing bread as important to our physical and industrial welfare, I, William Langer, governor of North Dakota, do hereby proclaim the week … as North Dakota Bread week and call upon all good citizens to join in its observance.”

Grocers, bakers, farmers and millers were set to put this proclamation into effect, and various special displays of breads and other flour-based foods, made with North Dakota wheat, of course, were set up around the state in honor of the week.

If nothing else, the governor’s proclamation provided a perfect excuse to serve breads, rolls, cakes, pies, scones, cookies, donuts, and all of the flour-based treats one could imagine.

Dakota Datebook written by Sarah Walker

Sources:

http://www.northdakotaagconnection.com/story-state.php?Id=819&yr=2012

http://www.nass.usda.gov/Statistics_by_Subject/result.php?0A77ECE2-C5A2-36F8-AA09-DE80C13D8DDE&sector=CROPS&group=FIELD%20CROPS&comm=WHEAT <accessed 10/5/12>

Tuesday, Oct. 12, 1937, The Bismarck Capital

 

This text and audio may not be copied without securing prior permission from Prairie Public.

Dakota Datebook is a project of Prairie Public, in partnership with the State Historical Society of North Dakota, with funding from the North Dakota Humanities Council.

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