Fun Teff Facts


One pound of teff grains can grow an acre of teff! VS 100 lbs or more of wheat to grow an acre of wheat.

  • Its name is assumed to be related to the world “lost” in Amharic – because of the tiny size of the the seeds
  • Teff requires 36 hours to sprout! The shortest of any grain!
  • Three thousand grains of teff weigh just one gram.
  • Teffs protein content (around 14%) is largely easily digested albumins (basically vegetable egg whites!)
  • Teff is thought to have originated in Ethiopia about 4000 – 1000 BC
  • Teff is fermented by a symbiotic yeast living in the soluble fiber on the grain’s surface (like the blush on grapes!)
  • Eragrostis tef (or Maskal Teff) borrows its scientific name from Greek, to mean “the grass of love” from eros – love, and agrostis – grass.
  • One pound of teff can produce up to one ton of grain in only 12 weeks
  • teff uses a type of photosynthesis called Carbon 4, which allows it to be most efficient in temperatures as high as those of the human body, as opposed to wheat whose optimal temperature is at 60 °F.
  • Teff was long believed to be high in iron, but recent tests have shown that its iron content comes from soil mixed with the grain after it’s been threshed on the ground. The grain itself is not unusually high in iron.
  • Many of Ethiopia’s famed long-distance runners attribute their energy and health to teff.

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