A bunch of years ago, someone I knew had a heart attack. He loved butter and didn’t want to give it up, so he started blending soy lecithin into his butter to benefit from its heart-healthy traits. It planted in my mind the idea that lecithin was, literally, a lifesaver. This was in the mid 1980s. Genetically modified soy was still a couple years away.
Since then, GMO soy has come to dominate well over 90% of the soy fields in America.
When I was developing the recipes for our breads, I considered not using lecithin at all, because soy had become so synonymous in my mind with the GMO takeover of American crops, something The Lancaster Food Company strongly opposes.
Now, I have absolutely nothing against soybeans. Steamed edamame with a little sea salt are wonderful. And my daughter, who was allergic to dairy until she was 5, grew up drinking soy milk.
Lecithin also has some amazing benefits in bread making, especially for certain varieties of softer bread. It helps the water and oil in bread better blend and stay blended, which helps to keep the loaves softer longer.
I thought about all these conflicting issues and opinions and realized that my only problem with soy lecithin is when it supports the use of GMO soybeans. So I set out to find a source we would be proud to use.
In America, there isn’t much GMO-free organic soy lecithin made from domestic crops. We were happy when we finally found one. They’re a great company, super-helpful and knowledgeable, and their organic soy lecithin is the only one we use in our breads.
There are other soy lecithins on the market, some you might even see in health food stores with a natural-looking label, but if it isn’t certified organic and doesn’t specify GMO-free, bet on it containing GMO soybeans.
We just wanted you know how much care we take in selecting our ingredients. By the way, we’ve been looking into organic sunflower lecithin, but have yet to find a dependable domestic organic producer. If you have any leads, please let us know!
blog post by Chief Product Officer Craig Lauer