County Ag News
The decline in prices for corn and soybeans has more producers looking at storage as an option for this years’ production.
Natural air and low temperature drying are not effective at temperatures below freezing, so this type of drying cannot be used until outside air temperatures average about 40 degrees – maybe a daily high of about 50 and low of about 30 degrees.
Corn above 24 percent moisture will have enough moisture that the kernels will freeze together if the temperature in the bin drops below freezing. The kernels will not freeze together if the corn moisture content is below 24 percent. The acceptable moisture content decreases as the amount of foreign material in the corn increases.
If warm corn is placed in a cold steel bin, condensation in the form of frost will occur on the bin roof and bin vents. The rapid drop in outdoor temperature makes this very likely. Cooling the corn in small steps reduces this potential.
Another storage issue for grain producers is storing cold grain on top of warm grain. This will increase the potential for condensation and frosting in the cold grain. The grain in the bin should be cooled before cold grain is placed on top.
The amount of frost may be enough to restrict or block airflow. The frozen mass would greatly increase the force required to break the ice, so normal stirring devices likely would not be adequate. If this occurs it may require using an ice auger or other method of breaking the corn apart to permit airflow and unloading. Corn harvested at temperatures below freezing can be placed into storage, but should not be placed on top of warmer corn.