Storage & Transport
Check bins and bags on cold November days
By Canola Council of Canada
Nov. 12, 2013 - When outside air is colder than stored canola, another moisture cycle begins within the bin. The grain mass on the outside edge cools first. This colder air migrates down through grain along the bin wall then up through the central core, picking up warmth and moisture along the way. This creates a pocket of humid and warmer air at the top of the central core where spoilage and heating can start.
Turning on the aeration fans for a day or two during the first cold week of fall can help put chills up any bin that hasn't cooled down to a safe level. However, aeration can be tricky at cold temperatures. Check the aeration fan's capacity for the amount of CFMs (cubic feet per minute) to ensure the fan capacity is matched to the size of bin. Fans with limited capacity will not be able to move the appropriate amount of cold air throughout the dense mass. This can create a moisture front within the bin, which can create a crust layer. With restricted air movement, spoilage could begin along the moisture front. This crust can also hang up and create a challenge for unloading.
Grain storage bags were a popular way to store a lot of the bumper crop this fall. Any canola in bags may be the canola you want to move first, as bags are generally considered safe for short term storage only. Moving bagged canola first also avoids the inconvenience of unloading bags in the snow (although we may be too late on that front for some) or in the soft muck of spring.
Read more about canola storage in the Canola Council of Canada's Canola Encylopedia.