The Home-Grown Cereals Authority (HGCA) and Scotland Food & Drink has launched a new campaign called All About Oats, which aims to promote the health benefits of oats and encourage people to eat them.

"This campaign will help raise awareness and remind health professionals and consumers ’all about oats’. From coarse pinhead oats and superfine oatmeal to regular and jumbo rolled oats; there are so many ways to enjoy this great Scottish crop," said Hamish Walls, Chair of the Scottish Oats Group.

The campaign launch on 6 November was attended by Karen Gillon MSP, Shadow Minister for Rural Development, and was well supported by the Scottish food industry.

The event included a presentation by Dr Derek Stewart of the Scottish Crop Research Institute, who has recently completed a literature review of the health benefits of oats.

The HGCA’s consultant dietician, Jane Griffin, also explained why oats were a valuable and versatile part of a healthy, balanced diet. She said: "As well as their versatility, oats are full of nutritional benefits. Oats can help reduce cholesterol as part of a diet low in saturated fat and a healthy lifestyle, and are a wholegrain food. As they are slow energy-release foods, oats can also help keep you fuller for longer to avoid the temptation of snacking. Oats are a good source of beta-glucans, phytochemicals, B vitamins, iron and potassium, as well as various antioxidants."

The campaign will run until next summer. See [] for more information.