2.13.2014

Interview with Markus Schramm, Founder and CEO of Manna Organics



Markus Schramm was born and raised in Bavaria, Germany. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Engineering. In 1993 Markus relocated to the USA.
Markus is the founder and CEO of Manna Organics, LLC, a organic certified commercial bakery in Lisle, IL. Products include organic certified sprouted Manna Bread® and artisan organic baked goods, as well as a line of gluten-free breads, nut butters, kale chips and more.



Sarah Velasco: Can you tell us about yourself? What does your job entail?
Markus Schramm: My name is Markus Schramm, I’m the founder and CEO of Manna Organics. My job entails making our customers happy, by providing delicious, healthy products that are unique and good for you, and – this is very important to me as well – are made by a team of bakers and chefs that themselves are happy and balanced. You can taste the difference.

Sarah Velasco: Can you tell us about Manna Organics, how did it get started?
Markus Schramm: Manna Organics is a small independent family enterprise dedicated to bettering the world we all share. We believe in organic foods and appreciate the benefits of organic farming and the positive effects on keeping small family farms in business, making and eating foods without synthetic pesticides and fertilizers, and helping the eco-system we all live in and depend upon.

Our bakery is located in Lisle, IL, a suburb of Chicago. Along with our 13 dedicated team members, we make our organic certified products like breads, nut butters, kale chips and other goodies in small batches, with lots of love and care.

Our organic and kosher certified raw materials are sourced with sustainability and low food miles in mind. Our fresh produce comes from farms in the Midwest, near our bakery. Our wheat and rye was grown and harvested by family-owned and -operated organic farms in Sasquatchian, Canada or Northern California. Nuts, fruits and most seeds come from California.

We buy our ancient grains like amaranth and quinoa from small co-ops in South America, where the owners and workers both make a living wage. We avoid raw materials that come from China.

Sarah Velasco: Can you tell us how sprouted breads are made?
Markus Schramm: Manna Bread® is hand crafted from sprouted whole organic grains (we sprout the grains fully, for many days!) and slowly baked at a temperature much lower than conventional bread. It is not a raw food. The inside of the bread is moist and cake-like, surrounded by a lightly baked crust, to hold the bread together.

Precise specifications for sprouting, humidity, baking temperatures and length of oven time is proprietary.

All ingredients, such as carrots, raisins, nuts, seeds or herbs, are all certified organically grown. The sweetness of Manna Bread® is solely due to our unique sprouting process, which converts starches into maltose and other complex carbohydrates. There is no added sugar, no yeast, no salt, no preservatives, no oils or other fats.

Image of :Manna Organics' Cinnamon Date Sprouted Bread
Sarah Velasco: Why sprouting?
Markus Schramm: Once it sprouts, the grains contain a greater array of nutrients, and it may even decrease a bit in
carbohydrates and glycemic impact. Jennie Brand-Miller and her colleagues, co-authors of The New Glucose Revolution and What Makes My Blood Glucose Go Up and Down? theorize that when a grain begins to sprout, it is likely that it uses its most readily available carbohydrate to fuel the actual growing of the tiny shoot. The result would be fewer carbohydrates left after sprouting. When sprouting occurs, which is a process similar to fermentation, the grain is partially predigested. This creates vitamins and nutrients which can help the body digest and absorb the content of the grain. As well, the starches have already started being converted into maltose during the sprouting process, reducing the final maltose content and producing a lower glycemic response. Diabetics tend do better eating sprouted grain bread.

Sarah Velasco: How long can we store the bread for it to stay fresh?
Markus Schramm: Shelf life of Manna bread is 1 year frozen, 3 weeks refrigerated and 5-6 days at ambient (room) teperatures. They can be re-frozen after thawing.

Sarah Velasco: What other products do you carry other than bread?
Markus Schramm: Kale chips, Nut butters, gluten free breads, yeast free Bavarian style sourdough breads, raw snack crunchies and ingredients.


Sarah Velasco: Where can readers purchase Manna Bread?
Markus Schramm: Manna Sprouted bread is carried by nearly all Whole Foods Markets, and many independent health food and natural food stores. If the store of your choice does not carry the flavor(s) you are looking for, try to speak to the customer service department or the frozen buyer. Stores will sometimes special order if you put in a request.

Or, you can order from us direct at
www.mannaorganicbakery.com. We have a nice sampler case of all 9 Manna Flavors in one case, to try out all the delicious breads.

Sarah Velasco: Anything else you would like our readers to know?
Markus Schramm: Manna Bread is a unique, cake-like sprouted bread, made of all-organic and kosher pareve certified ingredients. It is not really a traditional sliced sandwich bread, but much more moist and can best be compared to a muffin. Tastes great toasted, with butter, nut butter or fruit spreads, or with soups, on salads etc.

CHARACTERISTICS:

No Flour

No Salt

No Yeast

No Preservatives

No Sweeteners

Organic (QAI) and Kosher Parve (OU) certified

VEGAN