9 November 2001

Bring along your samples for free grain tests

FREE grain tests will be available to farmers who take samples to this years Grain 2001 event. This service is being offered for the first time to highlight the need to know exactly what is being offered when selling grain.

"All too often farmers have little or no idea what they have in store and this service mimics what grain co-ops do for members," says Ted Bird, managing director of Somerset-based West Country Grain at Cannington, the co-op recently merged with Southampton-based Grain Farmers.

"Trained staff will be operating the latest equipment supplied by the manufacturers and there will be a rapid turnaround of results as there is little wet chemistry involved."

It is intended to draw attention to the new NFU/HGCA/UKASTA check-list for selling grain. The NFU corporate initiative, developed from an idea proposed by Mr Bird, will be featured on the NFU stand.

Tests will be available for all combinable crops, including moisture, specific weight, protein, Hagberg, barley nitrogen and oil content of rapeseed. If it can be arranged in time, rapid germination testing will also be part of the free service.

"Anyone who markets grain through a co-op will have these tests done as part of the service. However, increasingly non-members who market through other outlets have little or no idea of what they are delivering," Mr Bird points out. &#42