STORAGE, CLEANING AND GRADING
The company has operated stores for quite a number of years, mostly flat stores on farm, but including membership of both Kernow Grain in Cornwall, and Trinity Grain. The most recent development has been the appointment of the company as a marketing partner of Camgrain, managing their Organic portfolio based at their Stratford Advanced Processing Centre.
The company has for a long time felt that the policy on many farms of ever increasing capacity combine harvesters, coupled to flat stores with only pneumatic drying facilities, and no cleaning or grading, will prove to be an unsustainable trait. Post ‘horsegate’, the food industry is now doing a critical appraisal of all other supply chains, including cereals, and it is identifying serious shortcomings. Uncleaned grain with higher than safe moisture content is a precursor to mycotoxin build up, never mind a threat to germination capacity (malting barley) and hagberg falling number (wheat). It is unlikely that either leading brands, or multiple retailers, will be content to expose themselves to these risks in the future.
Instead they will demand far more exacting standards are achieved within days of the grain being harvested. Couple this to the requirement for more homogenised supply contracts, cleaned to the ‘food grade’ standard, and the responsibility for raw grain supplies will be beyond the capability of many farmers who will need to delegate to a centralised processing complex. At Robin Appel Ltd we are being very proactive, and addressing this issue in a positive manner, and are already in advanced discussions to providing solutions which will also add value for growers!