Low Cost Method of Determining Grain Moisture for Small Holder Farmers

Date
2017-04-11
Authors
Hinrichs, Noelle
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Altmetrics
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Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering
Abstract

Small holder farmers in developing countries must store the grain they produce. Significant postharvest losses due to spoilage occur when grain is stored at a moisture content that is too high. Additionally, spoilage organisms create mycotoxins such as aflatoxin which is extremely detrimental to human health, especially children and pregnant women. Unfortunately, safe storage moisture levels cannot be determined by touch, smell or taste. It must be measured. Current moisture meter technology is well developed and accurate, but unaffordable for small holder farmers. This research replicates research previously done to measure moisture content using low-cost ($2) hygrometers - devices that measure temperature and relative humidity within the grain storage, the results of which can then be used with to predict moisture content. The project will validate the previous work and give practical experience so that ISU personnel can implement this low-cost technology in post-harvest loss reduction programs in Uganda and Ghana

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