Farmers Need Enough Grain Storage to Avoid Mold

The leaves of corn stalks turn upward to collect more water when it comes, on a farm west of Center Point, Iowa, on Tuesday, July 11, 2012. Much of the midwest is in a moderate to severe drought. (Nikole Hanna/The Gazette-KCRG)

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By Larry Burkum

AMES, Iowa (AP) - An Iowa State University grain storage expert says farmers should make sure they have a plan in place to handle corn that could have inconsistent levels of moisture, making this year's crop more likely to develop mold problems.

Professor Charles Hurburgh says the cold and wet spring followed by a heat wave late in the growing season results in a crop characterized by inconsistency.

He says farmers should make sure to get their corn cooled and dried as soon as possible after harvest because sharp differences in maturity, weight and moisture content create the potential for spoilage once the grain is stored in a bin.

Corn value drops if more than 5 percent shows mold and falls dramatically if mold spreads to more than 20 percent of the kernels.

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