With concerns about molds and mycotoxins across much of the Corn Belt in recent years, it’s important for storage and handling facilities to avoid potential carryover contamination. Here are some storage tips from Richard Stroshine, Purdue ag engineer:

         • Thoroughly clean grain dryers, bins, trucks and other grain-handling equipment before harvest.

         • Uniformly dry corn to a safe storage moisture. If mycotoxins are a concern, storage moisture should be 0.5-1% lower than normal.

         • Remove fine material, which caninterfere with drying and aeration and often contain higher toxin levels.

         • Cool stored grain as outside temperatures drop. Fungal activity is greatly reduced between 35° and 40°F.

         Stroshine urges growers to wear a respirator capable of filtering fine dust particles. “Even a little spoiled grain can produce millions of spores that can irritate lungs and cause severe reactions requiring hospitalization,” he says.