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By R. N. Reddy

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Extra resources for Agricultural Process Engineering

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When moisture is high, respiration increases, which in turn increases the production of heat thereby decreasing longevity. Effects of Fungi, Bacteria, and Pests The process of seed harvest and cleaning removes most debris and insects, but certain fungi, bacteria, and insects make their way into stored seed. Fortunately, the same conditions that are favourable to seed preservation inhibit fungi and bacteria and kill insects. Bacteria: Bacteria do not have a significant role in seed deterioration because free water is required for bacterial growth, and if the moisture content of the seed is high enough to support bacteria, the seed is more likely to succumb to deterioration due to other causes such as fungi, respiration, heating or premature sprouting.

Cardboard boxes and cans, though expensive, are re-usable, good for stacking, and provide some protection against mechanical injury to seed and to infestation by seed storage insects. Flexible packaging that has a weave, whether it is burlap, cotton, or plastic offers little protection against seed storage pests such as grain moths. Consequently, seed stored in such woven bags may have to be inspected if an outbreak is detected in a particular seed bag. Seed storage insects are very good at locating small 52 Agricultural Process Engineering openings in bags or containers that are not well sealed.

Strong seed vigor has mallY advantages for the organic grower, as vigorous seeds are less likely to be overtaken by diseases, weeds, and insects than weak ones. During the time that seed is held in storage, there is a gradual decline in germination and vigor. otseed that is stored at 40°F (14°C), or at subfreezing temperatures is tested on a longer cycle Agricultural Process Engineering 54 depending on how the seed was dried and the temperature at which it was stored. Every time a germination test is done, the germination percent and test date is recorded on the stock container.

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