If you’re heading to the grocery store… you might want to check out a new item in the chip aisle…that’s making one North Dakota crop a big part of their ingredient label. Sarah Gustin brings us the story of a national company making the switch…and both you and North Dakota farmers are reaping the benefit. Sunflowers are not only a big player in our state’s economy, but also in keeping us healthy. (Kelly Fisher / Medcenter One Dietician) It is very low in saturated fat, which is the type of fat that we want to limit for our heart…it is the one that clogs our artries the most. So it is a very good choice as far as the type of fat it contains. It also is a very good source of vitamin E in our diet and essential fatty acids. Snyder’s of Hanover is combining sunflower seeds with other whole grains to produce a new line of Multi-Grain Sunflower Chips. International Marketing Director for the National Sunflower Association, John Sandoil-formation class=kxInlineLink>Bakken, says Synder’s is the first company to use not only sunflower oil, but also sunflower kernels in their products. (Kelly Fisher / Medcenter One Dietician) Some of the added benefits with sunflower oil now is that they can use it in those packaged products, extending the shelve life of the product and also provding that beneft of the type of fat that is in those snack foods. Sandbakken says national deals like Synder’s is a big boost for our state’s growers. The company using not only the oil, but also the kernel means increased demand in both the oil and confection sunflower markets. (John Sandbakken / NSA) And as a producer if you can grow and produce a crop that has strong market demand, that has a healthy image, that has a real postive image, what that is gong to do. it is going to continue for your market to grow each and every single year. For farmers planting sunflowers this year…Sanbakken says the demand is there. (John Sandbakken / NSA) We are about a 1.8 million acre crop…this year with what farmers are intendng to plant. But easily with the way the market is growing with the way the oil is increasing each and every year we could easily have 4 million acres here in the United States with 2 to 2.5 million in North Dakota and have every bit of that oil spoken for. Sandbakken says the National Sunflower Association is hoping for a 15 percent increase in sunflower acres nationwide…to help fill current demand. Reporting for KX news, I am Sarah Gustin. If you’re considering making these new chips your next snack, you can learn more at syndersofhanover.com. The sunflower chips are avaliable in lightly salted, French Onion and Southwestern Cheddar.