ingrain™ Grain Sampling and Tracking System

The ingrain™ grain sampling and tracking system is a product under development that is targeted for beta release in 2018 and initial production in 2019.

The Costs

Acquisition and splitting of accurate, representative, grain samples is crucial, yet is often done improperly resulting in either lost revenues or additional costs for producers and buyers.

If the sample is not representative:

  • Producers don’t know what they have and can’t maximize value
  • Producers deliver different samples to multiple buyers, so bidding is not based on same sample analysis
  • Material delivered to buyer is not same as sample, resulting in a value adjustment and the buyer having to determine what to do with the unexpected material
  • Acquiring, splitting, and tracking samples from containers is a significant cost
  • Material shipped to processors or foreign buyers does not match the sample, resulting in additional costs or price adjustment

The Products

Acquisition

Acquiring a representative grain sample is challenging because the different materials that make up the grain (grain kernels, chaff, weeds, etc.) separate during transport and conveying. Samples must be obtained using a cross-cut motion and multiple small samples provide a better representation. Often the individual obtaining the sample doesn’t know the proper procedure or doesn’t take the time to do it properly.

It would also be preferable to continuously take small sample samples, but this is not practical for an individual to do.

Sample Splitting

The sample acquired usually needs to be split into several smaller samples in order to send for grading or purchasing purposes. This must be done using a specially designed device or the samples will not be identical. Simply pouring or scooping the grain into smaller containers does not result in identical samples.

Sample Storage

It is important that samples are stored in hermetically sealed containers to preserve sample integrity and moisture. This is often not the done.

Sample Tracking

Keeping track of potentially hundreds of samples and the associated bin storage locations and related sample information is a significant challenge.

Additional Features and Benefits

Grain Volume and Location Tracking

The system tracks the volume of grain conveyed and the location so producers know how much grain they have and where it is stored. The system also tracks from in a bin the sample was taken

Moisture Content

A sensor allows the grain moisture percentage to be tracked and associated with the related location in the bin.

Sample Picture

A planned future feature will provide a picture of sample and analysis of visual sample characteristics.

Aggregated Data

The data collected from the Grain Sampling & Tracking System can also be aggregated to provide information regarding the quantity and quality of grain that is harvested, which is of significant value to agricultural input suppliers, financial organizations, agricultural commodity buyers and government agencies.

The Payback

Sample Picture

Knowing the quality and quantity of stored grain allows producers to maximize the sales value of the grain. If the grain can be sold at a higher grade, the value could increase in excess of 20%, which potentially represents tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars per year.

If the grain analysis labs adopt and promote the system, grain sample analysis costs would be reduced.

Grain buyers would realize reduced costs and better customer relations if grain samples always matched the loads delivered.





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