Grain Cleaning Blog

Move your grain this fall with the all-new AGI Hutchinson Double Run Chain Conveyor

Image of AGI Hutchinson Double Run Chain Conveyor from Flaman Agriculture

The AGI Hutchinson Double Run Chain Conveyor is a brand new product to the Flaman lineup. It is built in Western Canada with the prairie farmer in mind. Manufactured at AGI’s plant in Swift Current, SK, it is designed to handle delicate crops grown on the prairies, like pulses, far more gently than an auger would.

Image of UHMW plastic paddles on the AGI Hutchinson Double Run Chain Conveyor
The UHMW plastic paddles gently convey grain 

Maneuverable in Tight Spaces:
Modeled after the clean grain elevator on your combine, its UHMW plastic paddles convey crops to your bin in a gentle manner. A huge benefit of this is the ability to operate at full capacity from nearly any angle, fitting into tighter spaces.
Another feature of the Double Run is the easy to use swivel arc kit, which makes the unit highly portable around the yard.  You can move it from bin to bin or dryer, by simply swapping a few pins.   

Image of swivel arc kit on the AGI Hutchinson Double Run Chain Conveyor
The swivel arc kit allows for easy maneuverability 

Low Power Requirements:
While the Double Run is powerful in getting your grain into the bin, it has a low horsepower requirement compared to alternative grain handling equipment. As an example, 8” model with a length of 82’ requires just 18 HP at a 45° angle (see chart below).  These units are available with an electric motor or PTO drive, giving you plenty of power options.
 
Image of AGI Hutchinson Double Run horsepower requirement chart

Proven Reliability & Longevity:
We all know an unreliable auger can be a huge problem for your operation at harvest time.  The Double Run was designed as a solution to this problem.  The chain conveyor requires less maintenance and has more longevity than your typical auger. Keep the chain running straight and tensioned properly, and these units will just run. And run. And run. 

Image of AGI Hutchinson Double Run Chain Conveyor in action at yard near Watrous, SK

Travis Frey of AGI walks us through exactly what makes this unit different:
 

The Double run comes in lengths of up to 82’ on the 8” and 10” models, with up to 4,000 BPH capacity on the 8” and 6,000 BPH on the 10”. It is also available in a 12” model, which has a 10,000 BPH capacity and lengths up to 130’.
 

Stop by your local Flaman Ag store or give us a call for more information on this unit.

Reduce labour when filling bins: Automate your grain handling site with a Walinga Blower System

Walinga Pneumatic Blower System may be one of the most versatile pieces of equipment you can add to your Grain Handling lineup. The Ultra-Veyor is designed to fill bins of various heights and distances from the ground up, allowing you to easily add the system to any pre-existing site....

Early season utilization: Increase the grade of your grain with a NECO Grain Dryer

As harvest is well underway in most areas of the province, many producers are utilizing their grain dryers early on this season and increasing the available window to combine. Some farmers have even noticed increases in their durum quality as their grade improves after drying....

Dry your grain with ease: Get ahead of harvest this year and book your NECO dryer install with Flaman today

There are many advantages to owning a grain dryer. As we learned last year in Western Canada, harvest 2019 had its challenges; most of which showed up when the crop needed to come off the field. Being able to dry your grain allows you to better manage your timeline and start combining as soon as it’s time to go! The earlier you can get started, the less likely you are to get caught with crop out in the field over winter.

NECO Grain Dryer

NECO Mixed Flow Grain Dryers are designed to easily and efficiently condition all types of grain for storage. With no screens to clean or unplug, this industry-leading grain dryer is designed not only for its performance, but also its versatility.

NECO Grain Dryer installation

The flexible, modular design of these grain dryers make for easy installation and can be customized and expanded to suit any farming operation.


A time lapse of a NECO Grain Dryer installation near Saskatoon

The NECO Grain Dryer’s mixed flow operation ensures even heating and cooling to provide consistent, high-quality grain. The improved air flow, quieter fans, and unequalled fuel efficiency make this dryer a valuable addition to any farming operation.

NECO Grain Dryer

NECO dryers use Commander Control with a Dryer Master moisture control system to protect the quality of your grain and prevent over- or under-drying. The COMMANDnet system allows remote access to your NECO Grain Dryer to monitor its performance from your smartphone or computer – providing you with total control over your dryer wherever you may be.

NECO Grain Dryer being unloaded

It is never too early to start planning for harvest, as we never know what mother nature has in store for us. Bookings are filling up fast, but there are still a few spots left to get your name on a dryer for fall. Our Grain Systems team can customize a complete grain drying system to suit your needs, guiding the setup and installation, and providing service and maintenance along the way.


Hear first-hand from Flaman customers what a NECO dryer can do for your operation

Be ready to get ahead of harvest this year – contact us to book your dryer install with Flaman today.

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For more information on our grain handling and grain drying solutions, talk to one of our agriculture specialists at your nearest Flaman location

Be ready for harvest 2020: Summer is the time to build your bins & install your grain handling equipment

As seeding is coming to a close throughout the province, you may be starting to think about the next steps in your farming operation for 2020. This likely includes thoughts of additional Grain StorageGrain Handling, and even Grain Drying equipment.

It may seem early to plan for harvest, but summer is a great time to build your bins and install your grain handling equipment to move the crop come harvest time. Buying now will ensure your equipment is installed and ready to go in the fall – so you can have peace of mind all season long....

Harvest 2019: An unconventional way to dry your grain in wet conditions

Image of portable heaters and Frost Fighters in front of Twister grain bins

The 2019 harvest is shaping up to be frustrating for most.  It’s no secret that harvest is well behind this year, with only 34% of crops being combined in Alberta (47% 3-yr avg), 47% in Saskatchewan (75% 3-yr avg), and 71% in Manitoba (85% 3-yr avg) as of last week.  Wet weather has plagued the prairies, with record rainfall in Manitoba and snowfall in southern Alberta & Saskatchewan in September.  A combination of high moisture levels and widespread crop damage has contributed to diminished grade.

It’s now a race to get remaining crops off the field and although we can’t control the weather, we can help you maintain the grade of your grain by getting it dried faster and limiting spoilage.  The most effective option is a NECO dryer from Flaman, which can be scaled to the size of your operation.  However, dryer installs are contingent on many environmental and logistical factors and it’s far from a guarantee that a dryer purchased today would be installed before the end of harvest. 

So, what does a farmer do if he or she can’t get a dryer installed in time?

Our team in Saskatchewan has heard a lot of stories from our customers who’ve resorted to unconventional methods to dry their grain. The overwhelming favourite by local farmers has been the Frost Fighter (available only at our Saskatchewan locations), which is a diesel-powered 350,000 BTU industrial heater designed to heat remote construction sites and shops. As it turns out, they are also easily adaptable to a bin aeration system and can pump heat into two bins simultaneously. It’s been a lifeline given the soggy conditions.

Kelly Stewart, the operations manager at our Flaman Moosomin location, was the man who made this idea a reality:

“I saw a video a couple years ago of an Alberta farmer using a similar method and he claimed it worked like a charm. It inspired me to try it out given how wet it’s been this year. Some local farmers put it to work and were extremely pleased with the results.  It’s not a perfect solution and we know it’s not recommended by the manufacturers, but desperate times have forced us to think outside the box.

With a little extra work, moving your grain around and monitoring your moisture levels closely, we’ve heard from many happy customers that have seen up to 30,000 BU dried in a week. Obviously, the best way to dry your grain is with a dryer but given how wet it’s been and with more precipitation in the forecast, this has been a great makeshift way to salvage what has been a tough harvest.”

Interested in learning more about grain drying? Talk to one of our agriculture specialists at your nearest Flaman location.

Fusarium Head Blight: 6 Things You Need to Know about the Invisible Disease That's Infecting Western Cereal Crops

Fusarium head blight (FHB) is a crop infection that has traditionally been found in Manitoba. Over the past three years, it has begun to spread and is moving west through the prairies. According to the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture, FHB was found in 98 percent of wheat and 97 percent of durum samples in 2016 (Fusarium Management Guide).
 
The Flaman Grain Cleaning team travelled to Melfort, Saskatchewan to take part in a Fusarium Management workshop presented by NARF at the Canadian Ag Research Farm. Here are the top 6 things you need to know in order to manage the disease and get the most out of your fusarium-infected grain.
 
1. What’s so bad about fusarium head blight?
  
There are around 17 different strains of fusarium, but fusarium graminearum is the most common form of FHB that is causing downgrades growers' grain.
 
The fungus causes a by-product, which is known as vomitoxin (VOMI). DON is a particularly nasty type of VOMI that poisons grain. Once infected, only a certain percentage of VOMI in your grain is acceptable for animal consumption.
 
2. Once you see signs of fusarium head blight, it's too late.

If you don't know much about fusarium, you're not alone. Most producers aren't aware of the catastrophic damage an infection can do to their crop until it's too late.
 
Once you see traces of fusarium in your crop it will reduce your ability to sell the grain and affect the growth of new seedlings. In extreme cases fusarium will decimate an entire crop.
 
At the fusarium management workshop, the team learned there is no quick solution to eliminate fusarium from your grain. However there are ways to mitigate the damage so that you can make the most of your yield.
 
3. Three key areas of fusarium management on your farm.
 
Ron Knox from AAFC Swift Current studies the disease triangle of fusarium's complex cycle. He highlights three key areas of disease management:
  1. Host crop: Breed your grain for resistance, or select a less susceptible crop such as barley and oats.
  2. Pathogens: Fusarium sits in the soil waiting to attack.
  3. Environment: It spreads quickest during the flowering stage with a combination of warm wind and moist weather.

4. When is the best time to spray for fusarium head blight?
 
According to Stu Brandt from Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation, the best and most effective defence is to time your fungicide application to coincide with the heading stage of the plant.
 
Environmental factors that contribute to ideal spraying applications include:
  • Wind conditions
  • Droplet size
  • Row spacing
  • Ensuring more water volume
 
Prevention is difficult to guarantee. One idea is to stagger times for seeding, so that flowering doesn't happen all at once.
 
5. Managing fusarium head blight infections the right way.
 
Fusarium can't be prevented, it can only be managed. Rex Newkirk from the University of Saskatchewan says that accurate testing of the level of Vomitoxin (DON) is what should really matter the most to you, as a grower. 
 
Andrew Taylor started specializing in removing VOMI from fusarium-infected crops at the end of 2016. He says, "The BoMill does its job. It's an interesting machine to run. It's loud, but it works."
 
He says he plans to pass on the advice about disease management to his customers, "I heard a few things about fungicide application being effective, you've got to get good coverage of kernels, and be aware of wet weather."
 
Once your grain crop has been infected a crop rotation that includes mostly pulse crops is recommended for four to five years according to Gurcharn Brar, a biology researcher of FHB at the University of Saskatchewan.
 
6. Flaman Grain Cleaning can help you sort fusarium head blight out of your crop.

Fusarium head blight is a broad disease and should be cleaned in the proper manner to give you the best results. Once you have analyzed a sample of your grain with vomitoxin testing equipment, you will have an economic decision to make. Either you will decide to clean it, dump it, or sell it as feed depending on the percentage of good quality kernels left behind.
 
Mitch Flaman, part of the Grain Cleaning division, says there are two ways to upgrade fusarium infected crops:
  1. Visually sorting fusarium damaged kernels (FDK) by the physical characteristics to a predetermined percentage (usually under 5%).
  2. Internally sorting (via NIT infrared) vomitoxin (DON) to less than 2 parts per million (PPM).
  
Once you know how fusarium head blight has affected your crop, Flaman's Grain Cleaning division can help you separate the infected kernels to recover the quality grain and save a percentage of your yield. They have several machines capable of cleaning fusarium and DON management including the ISM 40, BoMill Lab iQ, and FMS-2000.
 
Taylor found that every crop is different when using the BoMill to clean grain for his customers. He says, "Some go from four PPM VOMI to under two PPM, and some that start at three PPM won't drop at all. It just depends on how hard the crop was hit."

 
 

Fusarium Field Day

We’re going on a Field Trip! On Tuesday, July 25th 2017, we’re off to Melfort Research Farms, located 1.6 miles south of Melfort, Sk on Hwy 6. They are putting on a morning event all about Fusarium Head Blight. With two industry experts to walk you through all the activities and information, the day is scheduled to start at 9AM and topics include:
  • Fusarium Head Blight Biology
  • Effects of FHB on Cereal Crops
  • Optimal Application Technology
  • How to Improve Grade Out of the Field
PLUS! Bring your Grain Samples and have it cleaned and tested! If you have a sample of grain (minimum two, 5 Gallon pails) bring it and have it tested for vomi-levels before, cleaned, and tested after so you can see in live action how you are able to Improve the Grade of your grain this harvest. Machines will be on site complete with staff to operate them and explain how it works.

Everyone is welcome and it’s completely FREE! Pre-registration is requested to ensure enough chairs and space is made available. Just click here to send in your name, email, and how many people are attending (don’t forget to count yourself).
In addition to Tuesday’s Fusarium day, Melfort Research Farms is hosting a second Field day the following day, Wednesday July 26th 2017. You can use the same registration link to sign up for Tuesday, Wednesday, or both days.

See you there!
 

Demand Grows for Vomitoxin Cleaning Services - excerpt

Below is an excerpt from "Demand Grows for Vomitoxin Cleaning Services" by Brian Cross of the Western Producer. For the full article visit the Western Producer Online

With fusarium graminearum and its toxic vomitoxin sidekick deoxynivalenol (DON) stealing potentially hundreds of millions of dollars a year from Canadian farm revenues, the thought of paying toll processors to clean up commercial grain deliveries is gaining momentum.

Mitch Flaman, operations manager with Flaman Grain Cleaning and Handling, said a lot of growers mistakenly assume that a sample with little or no FDK should easily meet industry standards or contract specs for vomitoxin. However, removing FDK does not guarantee that vomitoxin levels are also being lowered. Flaman said it’s critically important to know what you have in your bin and what you’re trying to remove from a sample....

Kenaston, Sk Has New Grain Cleaning Technology

Spectrum Grain Solutions, located in Bashaw, Alberta, has purchased a BoMill TriQ grain sorter that has been installed in Kenaston, Sk. The Swedish-made BoMill TriQ has the capabilities to sort grain based on the interior make-up of each kernel, rather than the exterior appearance. It uses NIT (Near Infrared Transmission) technology to analyze each kernel and thus can sort grain based on fusarium, protein, vitreousness, seed quality and falling number at a speed of 25,000 kernels per second.
For a full article click here.
 
Learn more about the new technology in BoMill products on our Flaman Grain Cleaning website.
 

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