Crop, Stock and Ledger

Crop, Stock and Ledger

Corn Storage, Pumpkins, and FSMA Training

Tips for Temporary Corn Storage in Grain Bags

A lot of this year's harvested corn is going into big grain bags on the ground for temporary storage till more permanent storage is available. Here are some helpful tips from Dr. Klein Ileleji at Purdue University on how to manage grain stored in the field in grain storage bags.

  1. Locate the bags on firm, well-drained ground that is smooth and level that has plenty of room for loading and unloading equipment to maneuver. You do not want any debris to be present that could puncture the bag.
  2. Orient the bags in a north-south direction to minimize temperature variation along the length of the bag.
  3. Avoid grain spills near the bags, since these will attract vermin to the bags. Rodents and vermin increase the likelihood of bag damage by chewing or clawing.
  4. Keep folds at the base of the plastic bag to a minimum when filling, since folds are easy places for rodents to chew on the plastic grain bags.
  5. Inform your insurance company that grain is being stored temporarily stored in grain bags.
  6. Dry grain stored in grain bags is NOT hermetically sealed. Insects and molds can grow in these storage bags.
  7. Corn and soybeans stored in bags should be at or below 15% and 13%, respectively.
  8. Inspect bags frequently for tears and holes. Repairs should be made with sealants and tapes available from the bag's manufacturer.
  9. Grain should not be stored in bags past the spring warm up. It is highly recommended to not store in bags longer than 4 months and never past the spring thaw.

For more information and a link Dr. Klein Ileleji's article, "Use of Silo Bags for Commodity Grain Storage in Indiana", go to: https://goo.gl/dDYcKV . In addition, you can contact me, Doug Gucker, at: (217) 877-6042 or dgucker@illinois.edu.

Illinois #1 in Pumpkins

Illinois is the "number one" pumpkin producing state and produces nearly half of all the pumpkins grown in the United States. Most of that production is done within 90 miles of Morton, Illinois, the home of Libby's Canned Pumpkin.

Over 90 percent of all the pumpkins processed into canned pumpkin is done here in Illinois. The pumpkin variety grown the most in Illinois is "Libby's Select Dickinson".

In 2017, our state produced more than 643,800,000 pounds of pumpkin on 17,400 acres of land with a value of $24,421,000. We have over 500 pumpkin farm in our state and quite a few are located in our area.

Our state pie is, of course, the pumpkin pie. The majority of all canned pumpkin is purchased in the four months between October and January of each year.

Needing FSMA Training

Do you have concerns about safety in your produce operation? Are you concerned about compliance with Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA)? Do you want to know more about the difference between FSMA and Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs)? Then, the Produce Safety Alliance Grower Training might be for you! On Nov. 5 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., University of Illinois Extension will be holding a Produce Safety Alliance (PSA) Grower Training workshop at the DoubleTree Hilton, 10 Brickyard Dr., Bloomington, Illinois, 61701.

The PSA training is being offered as part of the Local & Regional Food Conference taking place Nov. 5-7 at the DoubleTree in Bloomington. The conference, hosted by Illinois Farm Bureau, is aimed at helping farmers learn how to increase their profits, develop a sustainable business and grow market demand to build long-lasting family farms. Usually, the PSA Grower Training costs $115. However, for those attending the Local & Regional Food Conference, this cost is included with conference registration, including the Association of Food and Drug Officials (AFDO) certificate fee. This special opportunity if offered due to sponsorship from Illinois Farm Bureau and the National Farmers Union. To learn more or to register for the Local & Regional Food Conference, visit www.ilfb.org/livelocal.

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