An Engineering Economic Model of Corn Cleaning
An engineering economic model showed that corn cleaning can produce net benefits of $.01 to $.03 cents per bushel, provided that corn with an initial broken corn foreign material (BCFM) content of 3% or greater is stored for at least three months. The model, which included five operational costs and nine potential benefits, gave results in close agreement with USDA survey data. Capture of benefits requires considerable operator skill, and elevators with larger volumes relative to cleaner cost can benefit more readily. Net benefits are independent of changes in corn grade standards or trade discount factors. Although the exact cost-benefit calculations are individually case-sensitive, the separation of BCFM into two factors will not greatly increase the incentives to clean for any reasonable set of cost inputs.