With the harvest season underway, here are some grain quality management trips from Dr. Charlie Hurburgh, ISU Extension grain specialist.
With overall poorer-than-average corn quality, storage and handling are key:
1. Get it cold as fast as possible, as cold as possible. If we can get grain cold, we can tolerate for a short while storage moistures of 16-17%, to buy some time. Cold temperatures have set in; every fan in Iowa should be on.
2. Get the grain as clean as possible; fines mess up airflow and spoil faster. Take cores out more often when filling bins. Plan so that dry corn will be moved as little as possible.
3. This is a balancing act… dry enough, fast enough to prevent spoilage right away, but not so hot and dry as to break it up immediately.
4. Bin dryers also have more issues in that they won’t dry as fast either, but the producer may not know it right away. The stirrator is our best friend this year.
5. If the moistures going into your dryer are still variable, an extra transfer may help (on the wet side). Extra transfers on dry corn will just mean fines.
6. Put low test weight corn in position to be sold as soon as possible.