Food & Health
Food & Health
Retain Quality and Maximize Prices When Growing Pulses
Clean equipment and bins prior to harvest to maintain quality and value:
Many facilities have a low or no tolerance for grains or foreign matter in pulses. Allergens such as soy, wheat, corn, and canola can be an issue if they get mixed in with your pulse crop. Carefully remove all traces of old grain from combines, truck beds, grain carts, augers, and other equipment used for harvesting, transporting and handling grain. Even small amounts of moldy or insect infested grain left in equipment can contaminate a bin of new crop/grain.
Never put new crop/grain on top of old crop/grain because of the risk of infesting the new crop/grain with storage insects and mold organisms. If infested grain is purchased for livestock feed, store it away from the new crop and feed it as soon as possible.
With the gluten free and Non GMO markets emerging, pulse crops are an attractive ingredient, so any contamination would most likely cause the load to be rejected. Keep all harvest equipment, trucks, bins, and conveyors clean. There is a NO TOLERANCE for fertilizer or seed treatment in the product. Contaminations like this or any foreign matter, will not only cost you money but could also cause a major issue for everyone in the pulse industry, resulting in a potential loss of revenue in domestic and international markets.
Steps to get your crop ready for market:
From farmer to processor - we are all in this together
Both producers and processors play a big role in being able to export our cash crops. By taking steps to mitigate risk and crop protection product choices, together we can mee the needs of our domestic and international customers.
From Seed selection to delivery, on-farm practices can impact domestic and international markets for all. Follow these guidelines to ensure your crop is market ready:
1. Buy clean seed.
2. use acceptable pesticides only.
3. Always read and follow the label and application rate to ensure the product is safe t o use and will not exeed the maximum residue limits (MRL).
4. Manage disease pressures.
5. Keep all equipment , seed and harvest, trucks, bins and conveyors clean.
6. Clean crop before storage
7. Never put new crop/grain on top of old crop/grain because of the risk of infesting the new crop with storage insects and mold orgainisms.
8. If infested grain is purchased for livestock feed, store it away from the new crop and feed it as soon as possible.
9. Treated crops may not be accepted by some grain buyers, consult with your processor/elevator before using certain products.
For more information on pesticides go to NDSU's website:
Maximize Prices and Reduce Problems When Growing Pulses
Article by Brian Gion, NPGA Marketing Director
Producers are all looking to get the best price for the crops they grow. While there are some things that are beyond of our control, there are things that can be managed to reduce problems and maximize the price producers get when delivering to the buyer.
Let us look at what are some things to consider on the production side which would help us out. Ensure you have good weed control program in place. A good fall burndown with Roundup and Roundup with pre-emergence application in spring is crucial for broadleaf weed control in pulses. One thing to remember is to keep track of the chemicals you have used and follow labels. This will help with any potential problems.
It is important to have varieties that fit well in your area so consult with your agronomist and seed dealer to see what varieties they suggest for your area. After you have determined what varieties work well in your area and before you buy seed, talk to buyers and processors about which varieties’ they buy and prefer. Some varieties are sought after in the marketplace and have premiums while some maybe very high yielding but are not desirable in the marketplace leaving you with a harder product to sell.
Buyers I have talk to had suggested to consider limiting the different types of peas and lentils you grow on your farm to limit contamination issues. An example would be if you grow yellow peas, it is not a good idea to grow green peas unless you perform very good cleanout on all equipment.
The crops in, they are growing, and we have monitored for disease now it is harvest time. We have moved from the production of pulses to handling them. Make sure you are set up to handle pulse crops on your farm. Pulse crops are a delicate crop and cannot be treated the same as cereal grains so keep handling to a minimum to avoid damage which could cause a reduction in price.
Buyers have stated their preference is to place them in hopper bins and use conveyor for loadout if possible. This will reduce the splits and dockage and keep it in grade. Avoid using a grain vac on peas as cracking will increase. If buying a conveyor is not feasible, run the auger full and slow.
Properly cleaning harvest equipment prior to harvesting pulse crops is crucial. As is properly cleaning loading/hauling equipment. Many facilities have a low or no tolerance for grains in pulses. Allergens such as soy, wheat, corn, and canola can be an issue in pulses. With the gluten free/non-gmo markets emerging, pulse crops are an attractive ingredient, so any contamination would most likely cause the load to be rejected.
Keep all trucks, bins, and conveyors clean. There is a N
for fertilizer or seed treatment in the product.
Contaminations like this and any foreign matter, not only cost you money but could also cause major issues for everyone in the pulse industry, resulting in a potential loss of domestic and international markets and revenue.
Unless you are bringing your pulse crops direct from the field to a buyer you need to store them. Storing pulses properly is important to maintain quality to avoid be discounted. If pulse crops were harvested at higher moisture and placed in an aeration bin the top of the bin could form a crust of mold. Product with mold present is subject to rejection. Keep a close eye on stored pulse crops in winter and throughout spring/summer months. The longer the storage period the more likely the quality will decline and affect the price received.
For ease of marketing, bin different qualities and varieties separate. It is a good idea to get your processor/buyer a sample of each bin of your product after harvest and inform them of inventory of what you have on farm. If your processor does not know your quantity and quality, it makes it very difficult to market and it is even harder to market if you do not know what you have on hand. Having accurate inventory records is important so you do not over or under sell. As soon as you confirm the sale, most processors sell that product amount at that time even before delivery, so if you have less in that bin then what you put on the contract, you may have to buy additional product to fill the contract.
Another thing to remember is to always call before you haul, most processors/buyers have limited storage for the different pulse crops.
We cannot control everything, but the above suggestions will help to minimize loss and maximize prices.
Clean all your equipment to avoid contamination of any kind. Some states have laws on the books that require if any of your three previous loads included one of the following high-risk materials, you must have a wash ticket documenting cleanout of the vessel (Trucks etc.):
Gravel, Stone, Rock
Bulk Hazardous Materials
With more emphasis being put on food safety, in the future all states may require proof of cleanout before being able to deliver your product to buyers. Check your state laws for what is require.
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Retain Quality and Maximize Prices When Growing Pulses
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