Quality Maintenance in Stored Grains and Seeds


Clyde M. Christensen and Richard A. Meronuck

Storage molds are a major cause of quality loss in grains and seeds held in farm bins and tanks, in commercial elevators and warehouses, and in barge and ship transport. The damage done by these storage molds is at first invisible, but later shows up as caking, mustiness, total spoilage of part or all of the grain, and heating - sometimes to the temperature of ignition. The authors, both of whom have had extensive first-hand field and laboratory experience with these grain storage fungi and the problems they cause, summarize in readable and readily understandable form the basic principles and specific practices to be followed in order to minimize such losses.

Chapters are devoted to grain grades and quality; storage fungi; conditions that promote or prevent loss in quality; spoilage in barge and ship transport; mycotoxins (toxic compounds produced by fungi growing in grains and feeds) and mycotoxicoses (the diseases caused in animals that consume such toxic products); insects, mites, and storage fungi, quality control; and identification of storage fungi as an aid in evaluation of grain condition and storability.

Clyde M. Christensen was Regents’ Professor of Plant Pathology at the University of Minnesota, where he taught for over 30 years. Among his many publications are four books published by the University of Minnesota Press: Common Edible Mushrooms (1943; a second edition, revised, entitled Edible Mushrooms, appeared in 1981), The Molds and Man (1951), Molds, Mushrooms, and Mycotoxins (1975), and, with Henry H. Kaufmann, Grain Storage: The Role of Fungi in Quality Loss (1969).

Richard A. Meronuck was a professor of Plant Pathology and Agricultural Extension specialist at the University of Minnesota. He worked closely with grain handlers as a teacher and consultant. His articles have appeared in Phytopathology, the Journal of Stored Products Research, Transactions of the American Society of Agricultural Engineers, Cereal Foods World, and a number of other agricultural publications.

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