Thursday, June 18, 2009

Alternate source for grains

Copyright 2009 Robert Henry

Editor's note- we are not "advising" people to store feed grains. We have made that crystal clear in numerous videos. However we keep getting the question "when I go to the feed store, what do I ask for?" So we decided to answer it here.

As I've covered before numerous times, the only difference between "feed" wheat and standard wheat is the amount of CLEANING done to it. A farmer does NOT plant a field and say "that there is gonna be PEOPLE wheat" and another field where he says "that there is gonna be ANIMAL wheat." There is NO two varieties.

The difference comes when it hits the processor. Standard "feed" grains are DOUBLE CLEANED. What this means is that they will have slightly more chaff and dust than TRIPLE CLEANED wheat- which is the standard for "people" wheat.

Now for folks that cannot find regular wheat in their local areas, this offers a possible alternative to shipping cross country.

1. Don't go into a feed store asking "can I EAT this stuff?" Liability is the key concern of just about every business now a days. Also, "Cleetus and Festus" at the feed store often times have no real idea about this. Your shopping for your "very picky" horse. You've had him get "sick" before because some grains were treated, you read this article saying that whole grains were better for your prized horse, etc. Then Cleetus and Festus will just think your the typical idiot yuppie.

The best choices in grains that you are likely to find in a feed store-

*Wheat- ask for whole wheat aka "kernals" or "berries" you do NOT want "wheat middlings" "wheat bran" or any form of ground or processed wheat. Whole wheat. Suggest that if you don't know what this should look like that you spend some time online viewing pics of it so you know what it should look like. Do NOT expect Cleetus and Festus at the feed store to know their product, sorry but that's been my experience with it.

I've bought a lot of wheat at feed stores, some for me, most to grow, all has been "feed" wheat except one bag that was more costly and was officially called "seed" wheat. The seed wheat was NOT treated, although it may be in your area, if in doubt ASK. "Treated" means something sprayed on the seed to keep it from rotting and/or getting bugs, etc. it means different things to different people but the bottom line is- you don't want anything for food that has had pesticides directly on it.

*Oats- oats have a hull that would have to be processed off to get what your likely familiar with- oatmeal. You may be able to process oats and have that equipment, you may not. Your NOT going to get quick rolled oats from the feed store. Quick rolled oats is what you get with the little quaker guy on it.....

In other words, probably skip the oats.

*Corn- whole kernal corn, NOT ground corn. Here again we want the whole kernal, not a processed form of it. A lot of "seed" corn is treated and you WILL SEE the purplish tint on the entire seed. If in doubt, take a handful and run it under water or get it wet, if your hand turns purplish color, it's likely treated.

The general idea is to go and find what you need, purchase 1 bag and take it home to check it out. Now, if you are not "used" to feed products, you might assume that the slight "smell" you get when you open the bag is mold or pesticides. It's hard to describe smells but I would say the "normal" smell of clean feed wheat is just kind of an "old" smell (even if it was just packed), to me all bagged grains kinda have that smell. If it's pesticides it will smell more like chemicals, hold a handful up to your noise and look over it carefully, it's going to be pretty obvious.

Unless their is some really grave circumstances, "I" would not buy grains from a feed store right now i.e, SUMMERTIME. Here in the south the best time to buy is in the fall and winter when the bug situation is less or non-existent. This may not be a problem in your area, but it is in a high heat, high humidity area.

Hope this helps.

As always you can email any questions to


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