This book looks like an excellent resource, what a massive amount of work
has been done to produce it. Traditional techniques of food processing is a
huge area to cover. My own interest over the last twenty years has been in
the traditional ways of processing barley and wheat, in particular floor
malting and the brewing of ale and beer. I doubt that you would find these
activities today in the regions that you studied, ie the Mediterranean, the
Middle East and the Indian sub continent, in modern times. Such activities
of processing grain into malt and ale ceased with the rise of Islam in
these areas, in the 6th Century and later. Alcohol is illegal and
forbidden. People do not make it any more there, malt and ale have not been
made in these countries for over 1200 years. It has slipped from common
local practice.

Nevertheless, I think that making malt from the grain, then making sugars
and fermenting them into ale/beer are an important aspect of food
processing in history and prehistory. They were once widespread in these

Making malt is a much overlooked and almost forgotten craft and
agricultural process. It has been out of public awareness until recently.
In the USA, the craft of the maltster, that is, making malt in the old and
traditional way by steeping, floor germination and careful kilning, has
been recently revived within the last four or five years. In Britain and
Europe there are only a handful of companies that still make malt in this
traditional way. It survives in some remote areas of Northern Europe,
Norway, Lithuania and Latvia for example. Making malt became an
industrialised process when Saladin Drums and Germinating Kilning Vessels
took over from the floor maltster. However, the fundamental biochemical
processes are unchanged.

A few years ago I gave a paper at a Food in Archaeology Conference about
traditional malting and mashing techniques. It was published recently as
'The Craft of the Maltster'. A few months ago, I wrote an article for the
magazine Brewer and Distiller International called 'Who were the first
maltsters? The archaeological evidence for floor malting'. Both are
available to download from my page on, if anyone is interested
and would like to read them. I also wrote an entry for the recently
published "Archaeology of Food: an Encyclopedia" edited by Karen Methany &
Mary C. Beaudry.

with best wishes
Merryn Dineley

On 11 May 2016 at 23:28, Andrew Fairbairn <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> ​Ordering today. Looks like another must have!
> Do you guys ever sleep?
> Cheers
> Andy
> ---------------------------
> Andrew Fairbairn,
> Associate Professor in Archaeology, ARC Future Fellow
> *U**Q* *A**L**L**Y*   ::  *Supporting the diversity of sexuality and
> gender identity at UQ.*
> School of Social Science | The University of Queensland | Brisbane
> Queensland 4072 | Australia| Office: Rm 331 Michie Building
> telephone 61 7 336 52780 | fax 61 7 336 51544 | email
> [log in to unmask] | web
> *Unless stated otherwise this email represents only the views of the
> sender and not the views of The University of Queensland*
> ------------------------------
> *From:* The archaeobotany mailing list <[log in to unmask]> on
> behalf of Mary Anne Murray <[log in to unmask]>
> *Sent:* Thursday, 12 May 2016 2:16 AM
> *To:* [log in to unmask]
> *Subject:* Re: FW: NEW ATLAS: Digital atlas of traditional agricultural
> practices and food processing
> Like!
> On Wed, May 11, 2016 at 5:14 PM, Jade D'Alpoim Guedes <
> [log in to unmask]> wrote:
>> What a great book! I'm looking forward to it coming out!
>> On Wed, May 11, 2016 at 12:51 AM, Roelf Barkhuis <[log in to unmask]>
>> wrote:
>>> Dear Jacqui,
>>> Thank you very much!
>>> Best wishes,
>>> Roelf
>>> Barkhuis
>>> Kooiweg 38
>>> 9761 GL Eelde
>>> the Netherlands
>>> +31 50 3080936
>>> [log in to unmask]
>>> 2016-05-11 9:38 GMT+02:00 Huntley, Jacqui <
>>> [log in to unmask]>:
>>>> An exciting new addition to the book list.
>>>> _____________________________________________
>>>> Jacqui Huntley
>>>> Science Advisor North East
>>>> Research Group
>>>> Direct Line: 0191 269 1250
>>>> Mobile phone (preferred contact): 077134 00387 or 07824 529245
>>>> Historic England | Bessie Surtees House,
>>>> 41-44 Sandhill | Newcastle upon Tyne | NE1 3JF
>>>> Save trees. Please do not print this message unless essential.
>>>> ___________________________________________________
>>>> ________________________________________
>>>> From: [log in to unmask] [[log in to unmask]]
>>>> Sent: 11 May 2016 07:56
>>>> To: Huntley, Jacqui
>>>> Subject: NEW ATLAS: Digital atlas of traditional agricultural practices
>>>> and food processing
>>>> Dear readers of the Plant Atlas Project mailing list,
>>>> We will soon publish a new atlas by René Cappers c.s.:
>>>> Digital atlas of traditional agricultural practices and food processing
>>>> R.T.J. Cappers, R. Neef, R.M. Bekker, F. Fantone, & Y. Okur
>>>> 3 volumes, ca. 1,990 pages, hardcover, full colour, 21 x 29.7 cm (A4)
>>>> The Digital atlas of traditional agricultural practices and food
>>>> processing documents the various processes involved in the production of
>>>> food—from working the fields through to processing the crops for food,
>>>> fodder, and other purposes. The atlas aims to define and describe these
>>>> various processes unambiguously by using a standardized vocabulary and by
>>>> explicitly taking into account the intention behind each process.
>>>> Illustrated with more than 3,000 photographs and numerous films
>>>> documenting 20 years of field observation in the Mediterranean area, the
>>>> Middle East, and the Indian subcontinent, the atlas also includes detailed
>>>> case studies of the practices and processes involving grapes, olives, date
>>>> palms, barley, and wheat. Many of these processes are part of the
>>>> intangible cultural heritage of agriculture that is now rapidly
>>>> disappearing.
>>>> PDF files of the Frontmatter, selected parts of the books, and the
>>>> Indices can be downloaded from the Plant Atlas Project website at
>>>> The atlas will appear end of June 2016, and can be ordered now with a
>>>> discount.
>>>> If you are interested, please visit the Plant Atlas Project website at
>>>> Roelf Barkhuis
>>>> Publisher of the Plant Atlas Project books
>>>> ________________________________
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