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bran,outer coat of a cereal grain—e.g., wheat, rye, and corn—mechanically removed from commercial flour and meal by bolting or sifting. Wheat bran is extensively used as feed for farm animals. Bran is used as food for humans (in cereals or mixed with flour in bread) to add roughage (i.e., cellulose) to the diet. It is also used in dyeing and calico printing.
a miling by-product consisting of the seed coat of various grains and the remains of unsorted flour. There are wheat, rye, barley, rice, buckwheat, and other types of bran. Depending on the degree of pulverization, bran may be coarse or fine. Bran, primarily wheat and rye bran, is a valuable feed for all types of agricultural animals. The nutritional value of bran depends on the content of flour particles (the less flour and the more shell, the lower the nutritional value). The average composition of wheat bran is 14.8 percent water, 15.5 percent protein, 3.2 percent fat, 8.4 percent cellulose, 53.2 percent nitrogen-free extractive substances, and 4.9 percent ash. One hundred kg of bran contains 71–78 feed units and 12.5–13 kg of digestible protein. A high bran content in bread reduces digestibility, whereas a small amount of bran improves the taste of the bread and increases peristalsis. Flax bran is used for poultices, and mustard bran for mustard plasters. Almond bran is used as a softening agent for the face and hands.