AGRO 3503,   Unit I-3.  Grain drying.




For prolonged storage of cereal grains, the moisture content must be maintained below certain levels to prevent spoilage.  For example, the safe moisture limit for most cereal grains is 15% or less.  For some crops, it is desirable to harvest the grain in the field at a higher moisture content than needed and then dry the grain as soon as possible prior to storage.  Examples of cereal crops where the harvest of high moisture grain is common practice are corn and rice.  Several reasons for this are:


            - the quality of the grain is improved due to reduced grain damage that would

               occur at lower moisture content.

            - field drying may not be fast enough to reduce field spoilage of wet grain.

            - it allows growers to time the harvest better and utilize equipment and personal

               more efficiently.


Dried grain allows indefinite storage without the loss of quality, thereby increasing the marketing window and value of the product.


There are four general methods for grain drying:

            1. On-farm, in the field by nature prior to harvest. 

            2. On-farm, in the field using a portable dryer and holding bins.

            3. On-farm in a permanent drying facility near temporary holding bins.

            4. Off-farm, at a commercial grain drying facility.


For a complete review of grain drying principles, refer to the link below:


                        GRAIN DRYING


Complete the quiz on this unit, Quiz I-3, when finished.