Barley preservation in bulk is challenging, because for many buyers and maltsters, only 2% of broken grains are accepted. Meaning that the vacuum level has to be adjusted in order to be effective but also to make sure that the grain doesn’t break.
VacQPack recognizes such challenges and its machinery is prepared to comply with such requirements, because it’s a unique technology capable of accurately measuring the pressure level inside the package.
The problem of high levels of moisture in the storage of barley are well known; the standards are a top moisture content of 14%. Our Ethylene vinyl alcohol (EVOH) gas-tight barrier delivers very low transmission rates of water vapor and oxygen. Problems with unstable or uncontrollable moisture are no more.
Common fumigation by phosphine can be replaced by a modified atmosphere (MAP) approach, as studies on grains have been proving.
Once the the barley’s moisture content is measured and the values are acceptable, Carbon Dioxide (CO2) can be flushed without the hazard of acidification. CO2 can be freely used on food, and works as a fast-acting pest deterrent.
Nitrogen (N2), an inert gas, can be also applied as an option. Compared to CO2, there are no risks of reaction with moisture to produce acid. On the other hand, N2 takes more time to act as a pest deterrent, although it is equally effective.
Barley must be dried before storage. Often, the crop is left in the field until the moisture content is reduced to 12-14%.
Feed efficiency improves with the removal of hulls, grinding, or the breaking of the bran layer. Common processes include rolling (dry or steam rolling), flaking, grinding, and pelleting.
A known risk in barley preservation is Penicillium verrucosum growth and Ochratoxin A (OA) formation. To overcome these hazards, barley should be dried to 13% of moisture and kept monitored at the same rate for effective long-term storage.