Friday, July 19, 2024
General Agriculture

Standardization and Grading of Grains: Advantages and Disadvantages

Most countries have developed national standards for their main grain crops. These have evolved to facilitate the movement of grain, providing both sellers and purchasers with guidelines to support financial transactions, and ensuring that quality will meet up with end-use requirements.

Where trading involves direct choice and price negotiation in front of the commodity, grading standards are rarely employed, quality is assessed visually and is influenced by end user, and the price is determined more by local rather than national factors.

For transactions that involve the movement of large volumes of grain over long distances, the buyer may never meet the seller or be able to examine the whole consignment.

The standard will provide an unambiguous description of the quality of the consignment and assist in the formation of a legally-binding contract. Standards can also be seen to protect consumers’ rights through setting limits to the amount of unsuitable or noxious material.

The use of grading standards can send a clear indication of quality requirements to both producer and end-user. Although some countries have sought to support small farmers through purchase of all grain at the same price without regard to quality: under these circumstances grading standards cease to be operative by default.

This may stimulate productivity but creates problems for end-users such as millers who require uniformity and consistency in quality to ensure efficient and cost-effective processing.

Whilst establishment of standards can set the guide-lines and rules for sale and purchase of grains, there has to be an institutional framework for their implementation.

This is much easier to establish at centers of aggregation of grain, e.g. ports, parastatals grain depots, than in the more diffuse rural areas and markets, where control and supervision of regulations are difficult.

Notwithstanding these problems, the establishment of quality and grading standards for producers and users can be beneficial in the following ways:

Advantages of Quality and Grading Standards of Grain Crops

Standardization and Grading of Grains

Graded grains are likely to be more equably priced than non- standardized grains. This will bring stability not only to market prices but also to the quality offered.

Prices quoted against a recognized grade assist producers and traders to market their products. This will also benefit net consumers of grains in more stable prices with assured quality.

Greater conformity in quality through standardization will provide the millers, bakers and other processors with the consistency necessary for optimum performance.

Standards reveal clear variations in quality and indicate the opportunities for improvement and the potential rewards to be obtained.

The sanitary hazards associated with the inter-country movement of grain can be reduced if clearly-defined standards are enforced, particularly in relation to the prevention of spread of serious storage pests like the Larger Grain Borer.

Read Also : Six (6) Factors Affecting Mechanized Harvesting Of Field Crops

Disadvantages of Standardization and Grading of Grain Crops

National standards may reflect local end-uses and hinder export to areas that have differing requirements. Whilst restricting opportunities for commercial trade, this can also be detrimental for regional food security.

The stimulation of regional trade would require inter-country conformity in export standards. These may have to be more stringent in relation to physical conditions such as moisture content, defective grains and insect infestation, than that for national use.

The establishment of standards and the quality assurance practices to regulate and enforce them carries costs which have to be carefully considered to avoid imposing unnecessary expense for little improvement in quality.

Read Also : Concept and Principles of Water Quality


Benadine Nonye is an agricultural consultant and a writer with several years of professional experience in the agriculture industry. - National Diploma in Agricultural Technology - Bachelor's Degree in Agricultural Science - Master's Degree in Science Education - PhD Student in Agricultural Economics and Environmental Policy... Visit My Websites On: 1. - Your Comprehensive Practical Agricultural Knowledge and Farmer’s Guide Website! 2. - For Effective Environmental Management through Proper Waste Management and Recycling Practices! Join Me On: Twitter: @benadinenonye - Instagram: benadinenonye - LinkedIn: benadinenonye - YouTube: Agric4Profits TV and WealthInWastes TV - Pinterest: BenadineNonye4u - Facebook: BenadineNonye

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