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grain cleaner

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hello i was curious when useing raw unmalted feild grain are others runing it thru grain cleaner before grist mill or jus a basic screaning and magnet to remove big rocks and metal combine parts . any pros and cons to cleaning or not cleaning . thanks 

tim 

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Why wouldn't you want all the foreign matter (bugs, mouse poop, dirt, and other fun surprises) removed from your grain?

Pros - You make a better product.

Cons - It means your product costs go up maybe $0.02 per bottle. If your margins are that tight it's time to rethink your business plan.

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Hey Tim, 

Is there a particular reason other than cost that you are choosing to go with unmalted field grain?

If you are committed to unmalted field grain, I would recommended running it through any grain cleaning systems, wash and screening you might have available. Also, keep in mind that the malting stage of grain activates the necessary enzymes needed for starch conversion in grain. So, if you go with unmalted, you will need to supplement these enzymes to get the necessary starch conversion.

Cheers,
Graham

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hey guys in response , my grain cleaner crapped out just plain wore out .  not sure of the cost per bottle to clean grain that's not the issue its time in a day issue . and now replacing the cleaner issue  . some have said they dont clean there field grain other than screening out things that will damage the mill , so i'm thinking am i wasting my time and money replacing and running the cleaner . 

as far using unmalted field grain GR it is definitely a cost plus bonus to stick with a grain bill of 30 % malted grain and 70 % unmalted field grain no matter if its harrington barley or wheat . some years grain right out of the field is dirt cheep and we can buy it on its way to the malt plant , however the price of malt doesnt seem to drop . lots of local producers have contracts to the malt plant but are willing to sell off anything over and above there contract for cash verses selling it on open market for less than contract price .  im sure most distilleries use unmalted grain in there mash bill other than single malt or scotch styles . 

the question is are they runing it thru a cleaner first lol 

thanks 

tim 

 

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It sounds like you have farmers up around you that should have a cleaner. We ask all of our farmers to clean before delivery. Most farmers around me don't have a cleaner, so we asked a seed farm to do it for our farmers.

 

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The "cheap" barley is not likely malt grade and can have nasty items such as vomitoxin (DON) in its mix.  Prior to purchasing, the barley would be tested  and a maltster would reject this barley since a high enough concentration would make people (and animals) sick.  Vomitoxin will not be corrected by cleaning. 

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hey guys in response , my grain cleaner crapped out just plain wore out .  not sure of the cost per bottle to clean grain that's not the issue its time in a day issue . and now replacing the cleaner issue  . some have said they dont clean there field grain other than screening out things that will damage the mill , so i'm thinking am i wasting my time and money replacing and running the cleaner . 

as far using unmalted field grain GR it is definitely a cost plus bonus to stick with a grain bill of 30 % malted grain and 70 % unmalted field grain no matter if its harrington barley or wheat . some years grain right out of the field is dirt cheep and we can buy it on its way to the malt plant , however the price of malt doesnt seem to drop . lots of local producers have contracts to the malt plant but are willing to sell off anything over and above there contract for cash verses selling it on open market for less than contract price .  im sure most distilleries use unmalted grain in there mash bill other than single malt or scotch styles . 

the question is are they runing it thru a cleaner first lol 

thanks 

tim 

 

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ok not sure what i did to make it post that twice but anyway . glad to hear your getting urs cleaned tom  maybe delivered clean would be a option have to check into it  . thatch the cheep grain im talking about isnt cheep quality it is overage on malt barley contracts to the malt plant it has already been tested and approved by the malt plant it jus has not been malted or cleaned .some years there is alot of extra over and above the contract that makes the raw grain price drop making it very affordable grain .  the issue ur talking about may appear in feed barley but i have never even heard of this being a issue even in feed barley or feed wheat . there would be dead cattle everywhere if it showed up in feed grain cuz nobody tests there feed grain for anything . 

so back to original question thatch do u run ur grain thru a cleaner before milling . thanks 

tim 

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I'm happy you have never seen it.  However, I know of at least 1 instance where the DON level in malt barley was 7% and was brought down to .6% with a Satake color sorter.  I know of no maltster who does not test for DON.

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im sure the malt plant does test for DON why wouldnt they lol but im positive farmers feeding cattle sure dont . as i said before the grain im talking about is grain that has bin passed and approved by the malt plant , see if a producer has a contract for 10 000 bushels but he combined 15 ooo bushels he is stuck with 5000 bushels of grain the malt plant wont buy . that grain is either going to sell as unmalted malt barley or as regular open market barley ...this is what makes it a cheep commodity some years as low as 4 bucks a bushel . its all about contract grain . 

tim 

 

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DON and Mycotoxin levels vary a lot by region. If the area is historically low, local farmers who buy feed probably don't test for DON, or may not even be familiar with it. Regions like the American northeast struggle with it on a lot of small grains, where as the areas that traditionally grow small grain (by traditionally I mean the last 50 years), like the Dakotas and the American/Canadian northwest have significantly lower, if not non-existent levels. That is why they grow these grains in these areas, the climate is just better suited for it. 

Maltsters test for it not primarily because of toxicity, but because even a small amount can lead to gushing in beer. It is simply to avoid recalling and destroying an extremely large volume of low margin product.

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i think ur bang on the answer tom , around here i have never heard of some ones barley being rejected because of it nor have i heard of anyone testing there grain before using it for cattle or hog feed . often grain will be rejected due to high protein count or poor germination ability  , this drops the grain from raw malt price to feed price . we have mashed barley that has to high of protein and its a foaming night mare . grain rejected because of poor germination does not affect us . anyway back to the original question screener vs cleaner i think were just going to replace the cleaner . best as i can tell there not much time saving between the two . 

so new question you guys out there that are buying field grain or utilizing grain off your own farms (farm distillery) what brand of cleaners are you using and are you happy with it or what brands are best . the one we had was a premier made by defasco . it lasted good done good job but maybe there are better ones out there . 

tim 

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Hudson, Vomitoxin does not affect ruminant animals such as cows as much as it would affect humans and pigs.  In the malting for the brewing industry the acceptable amount is 1ppm, in the northeast it is very hard to achieve that low number except in western NY.  the eastern part of the state is wetter.  I have personally grown small grains for a few years and have had only one successful year (2016).  we grew some very nice rye.  One huge problem with barley is there is no secondary market for it if it is not of malting quality.  

 

BUT to answer your question if you should get it cleaned, yes you should.  If the farmer that grew it only offers it as "field cleaned" that mean it was only cleaned by the combine it still has allot of other seeds and grasshoppers, and other goodies in it.  

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What is wrong with grasshoppers in your mash? A bit more flavor.:o

I grow my own grain and it has a lot of chaff and other seeds, and grasshoppers. Jim Murray has awarded my whiskies 4 Liquid Golds, maybe he likes those grasshopper notes.

You won't get mouse poop directly from the field, that is usually added during poor storage even if it is cleaned then stored with mice.

Tim, what was your cleaner removing before it died?

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mjdeheme that sucks that you cant grow barley in your area it is a great source of cost effective starch . your exactly right about no secondary market for barley , the best malt quality barley in the world is jus feed if the malt plant wont buy it . i jus came home from having a visit with a neighbor who grows harrington metcalf barley for the malt plant he is sitting on 20 thousand bushels of barley that is approved malt but his contract is full and only place he can sell it is as feed he offered me all i want for 3.50 a bushel . now that sucks as a farmer but as a distillery thats jus affordable starch . 

pete never thought of grass hopper as a flavor but you may be right lol . our cleaner cleaned it completely clean it was a seed cleaner there was no weeds or broken or small grain and all the chaff and straw gone . i used to keep an eye on the discharge and yup there was some grasshopper in the mix lol . i also agree there no mouse poop coming off the field , stored in steel bins with hopper bottoms or cement floors mice should never be a issue . over the years i have been in enough food plants that handle grain to know mouse crap is the least of there worries lol .  my wife is laughing about the mouse poop and she said have you ever been in a grain elevator where do you think that grain is going , somebody is obviously eating it lol . 

there are grain screaners out there that are less complicated than a full fledge seed cleaner it some thing im looking into . im thinking they may have an advantage as they leave straw bits and chaff in the grain save buyingIMG_2195.thumb.jpg.5ac8529c8e0303902ed217a368cdb8a0.jpg rice hulls .  here is apic of a old hand cranked 2 tray fanning mill you can have it for free pete if you come get it it will get those grass hoppers out of your grain , doubt it has been used for fifty years but its complete lol . 

tim 

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