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OGRIN Grain Workshop: Session 1

October 19, 2020 @ 6:00 pm 7:00 pm

When the traditional small grains crops, which are largely grown in the region as feed or soil-improving cover crops, are managed organically and for food-grade quality, they and their exotic cousins, the ancient wheats spelt, emmer, and einkorn, can fetch retail prices comparable to those of high-value vegetable crops.   However, a survey of farmers in PA, NY, and NJ showed that two constraints to the development of value-added grain enterprises are lack of expertise in food-grade grain production and processing and difficulty in finding affordable, scale-appropriate production and processing equipment.

The training program will be a series of three intensive two hour online short courses with video field days/workshops that will largely be taught by farmer/processor experts and located on farms or at processing venues.

The first session will be a reprise of planting rates and fertility management which was the field day from last year.  Instruction will include critical production practices, and the basic equipment needed for food-grade grain production.

The second session will begin with a harvest readiness assessment, combine set-up, harvest and cleaning and storage.

The third session will be processing – dehulling (during which the results of the project’s research on dehulling will be presented and discussed) and other types of grain-processing.  Participants will be encouraged to fill out a worksheet to help them identify a specific equipment need that would facilitate start up or expansion of a value-added grains enterprise.