Barley, a member of the grass family, is a major cereal grain grown globally in temperate climates. It was one of the first cultivated grains, particularly in Eurasia as early as 13,000 years ago. Barley has also been used as animal fodder, as a source of fermentable material for beer and certain distilled beverages, and as a component of various health foods. It is used in soups and stews, and in barley bread of various cultures. Barley grains are commonly made into malt in a traditional and ancient method of preparation.