Farmers know that proper grain drying is essential to ending up with a saleable final product. Drying prior to storage prevents loss of product due to microbes and moisture. This process must be performed on just about all grains, including the staple crops wheat, corn, and rice as well as oats, barley, and other specialty grains. Acceptable levels of moisture will depend on the type of grain in question; the more oil in the grain, the lower its moisture will need to be. Acceptable temperatures and time required depend on the method used. There is a wide variety of equipment available on the market, but techniques for drying fall into only three categories: in-storage, batch, and continuous flow drying.
When employing in-storage methods, the temperature is kept low to prevent insect and other damage. The success of low-temp drying is dependent upon weather and humidity variables. Adequate airflow must be assured to prevent spoilage, and appropriate humidity must be maintained. Because of this, many farmers choose to use electric heat dryers and employ a multiple layer method. This shortens the allowable storage time, but also decreases the chances of spoilage.
For those who choose batch drying over in-storage methods, a wide variety of equipment can aid the process. Grain Dryers in Southern Idaho that employ bin batch drying methods avoid issues of uneven moisture content, and completely dried grains can be stored in the bin. Column batch drying uses a similar technique, but has a smaller capacity and because of this the dried grain must be stored elsewhere. Continous flow drying involves the application of a constant flow of hot air across a large portion of wet grain. Although it is a fairly efficient process, some grain can be lost due to heat damage and variation in moisture content.
As a farmer, your equipment needs will depend on available space, crop output, and intended length of storage time. But across the board what’s most important is cost efficiency and quality of your final product. Click here to learn more about your options for grain dryers in Southern Idaho to find a solution that is right for you.