Safe storage guidelines

Producers can use the following charts to prevent spoilage of stored grain

How to use the charts:

  • Measure the moisture content and temperature of your crop as it goes into storage.
  • Plot this initial moisture content and initial temperature on the chart. If the result falls in the no spoilage zone, then your crop should store safely for up to 5 months, 6 months in the case of wheat. If it falls in the spoilage zone, spoilage will occur.
  • Cool or dry the crop in storage until the temperature or moisture content put it in the no spoilage zone.
  • The centre zone cuts off a 1% safety margin although spoilage may occur under these conditions.
  • Be aware that the moisture content and temperature of a bulk may change during storage due to convection currents, leading to localized spoilage. Monitor the top- centre of the bulk regularly throughout storage or use aeration.

Charts

Graphs outlining potential risk of spoilage of various grain commodities base upon initial temperature and moisture content. As moisture content and/or temperature increase so does the risk.

Safe storage chart for barley

Graph showing when spoilage occurs for barley
Barley: spoilage occurs when initial temperature ranges from 5°C to 20°C with respective moisture from 18% to 10% moisture content.

Safe storage chart for beans

Graph showing when spoilage occurs for beans
Beans: spoilage occurs when initial temperature ranges from 5°C to 42°C with respective moisture from 20% to 10% moisture content.

Safe storage chart for canola

Graph showing when spoilage occurs for canola
Canola: spoilage occurs when initial temperature ranges from 10°C to 50°C with respective moisture from 12% to 7% moisture content.

Safe storage chart for flax

Graph showing when spoilage occurs for flax
Flax: spoilage occurs when initial temperature ranges from 5°C to 32°C with respective moisture from 13% to 6% moisture content

Safe storage chart for oats

Graph showing when spoilage occurs for oats
Oats: spoilage occurs when initial temperature ranges from 0°C to 21°C with respective moisture from 17% to 8% moisture content.

Safe storage chart for peas

Graph showing when spoilage occurs for peas
Peas: spoilage occurs when initial temperature ranges from 5°C to 42°C with respective moisture from 19% to 10% moisture content.

Safe storage chart for wheat

Graph showing when spoilage occurs for wheat
Wheat: spoilage occurs when initial temperature ranges from 0°C to 28°C with respective moisture from 18% to 10% moisture content.

Safe storage chart for yellow mustard

Graph showing when spoilage occurs for yellow mustard
Yellow Mustard: spoilage occurs when initial temperature ranges from 5°C to 47°C with respective moisture from 13% to 5% moisture content.

Cereal Research Centre factsheet.

Reproduced with the permission of:
Dr. Noel White
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
Cereal Research Centre
195 Dafoe Road
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
R3T 2M9