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Panicles at maturity, leaves stayed green: the secret of sorghum harvest

October 4, 2021

The maturity of the sorghum grain is achieved when grain humidity is 35%, harvest can start  when humidity is at 25% but harvesting time for farmers for commodities is generally at 15-16% depending on weather situations.


Only frost or defoliant (at maturity) can destroy the leaves before winter and frost periods, in this case the farmer will will harvest only panicle, due to this the clearance of panicle is a important things for breeder.

Do not delay harvest, because there  is more risk of re-humidification of grains and decreasing of quality when panicles at over-maturity. On Eastern Europe the farmer will harvest the first Sunflower, and after Sorghum before Maize.

Some key point for better storage:

- Grain humidity < 16%: Cooling ventilation to reduce humidity.
- Grain humidity between 16 to 18%: Return at 15% = drying ventilation.
- Grain humidity > 18%: Drying ventilation is needed.
- Ventilation will start directly after harvest, apply a cooling ventilation systematically if possible to preserve the quality and reduce risk of fermentation.

Some maturity grain examples depending on uses:

- ≈30% H2o, if wet grain is used for animal feed (for example for pork production...).
- ≈25% H2o, if used for human food to preserve germination and quality of grain such as floor, whole grain, pop-sorghum, beer malt, whisky malt.... and seed production. Not more than 4 hours before harvest and beginning of drying to limit risk of fermentation of the grain.
- norm dry grain without drying system≈15-16% H2o, for all animal feed and Bioethanol uses (starch).