Wednesday, 19 August 2015 23:22

Small Farm Grain Storage (M0002)

Written by PC/Washington
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Peace Corps Official

Farmers all over the world lose much of their grain after it is harvested. Farmers work hard to plant and grow crops. And often they do not receive good returns for their time and effort. The grain is attacked in the field and in storage by insects. rodents, birds, and other pests. The grain that pests do not eat, they make dirty with their droppings and their bodies.

Farmers have lived with these problems for hundreds of years. So they have developed ways to deal with them. Many old ways are wasteful, but a number of the old methods are good and must be kept until they can be replaced or improved.

In recent years, however, the grain storage problem has changed (and, in some cases, temporarily worsened) as steps toward full development have been taken. For example, now there are new seed varieties which grow faster and yield more grain. Farmers plant these new seeds, and this grain is ready for harvesting earlier than it used to be. This grain is ready to be harvested during the rainy season. The farmer has always dried his crops in the sun, but there may be little sun during this season. Also, it is likely this new variety of grain must not be left to dry in the field: if this grain dries too long in the field, it will shatter (break). But if the farmer brings the grain from the field and stores it before bringing the moisture content of t~el· grain down to 13% or lower, the grain WI 1 rot and mold.

The farmer must find a way to dry his grain, store it safely, and plant another crop-- all in the time he used to put in on one crop. His many old methods must be changed to help with new problems.


Additional Info

  • Format: PDF
  • Authoring Organization: PC/Washington
  • Language: English
  • Sector: Agriculture
  • Type: Peace Corps Official
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