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Research article2004Peer reviewed

The impact of storage methods on storage environment and sorghum grain quality

Dejene M, Yuen J, Sigvald R


Farmers in Hararghe, Ethiopia, store their sorghum grain in underground pits. The grain acquires moisture from the surroundings and creates favourable conditions for the development of insect pests and storage fungi. This study investigates the impact of storage methods on the storage environment, storage fungi and sorghum grain quality during a period of 24 months storage. The storage conditions included an above-ground bin, cement and dung pits all lined with plastic and a soil pit without any lining. Temperature and moisture content were higher in the soil pit than in the bin, cement and dung pits. The bin maintained the lowest temperature and grain moisture content. Bulk density of sample from the soil pit decreased by 9% while the changes in the other three stores was not significant. Regression analysis of percentage germination on grain storage period showed that germination of samples from soil pit decreased by 6% per storage month. All other seeds retained germination above 90% and there was no significant difference in germination between the bin and non-soil pits. The storage fungi detected in the storage structures included Aspergillus candidus, A.,flavus, A. glaucus, A. niger and Penicillium spp. with the greatest incidence of all fungi in the soil pits. Modification of the underground pit with cement and plastic lining or replacement with improved above-ground bin could therefore improve the grain storage quality

Published in

Seed Science and Technology
2004, Volume: 32, number: 2, pages: 511-529

      SLU Authors

    • Sigvald, Roland

      • Department of Ecology and Crop Production Sciences, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences
      • Yuen, Jonathan

        • Department of Ecology and Crop Production Sciences, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences

      UKÄ Subject classification

      Agricultural Science

      Publication identifier


      Permanent link to this page (URI)