Cereals are the most important crop in the world, and their content of carbohydrates, proteins and vitamins is essential in human and animal nutrition. A good harvest is not enough to obtain high quality cereals, each subsequent stage must be addressed correctly.
After the drying stage which ensures a cereal moisture content below 14%, there is the storage stage.
Storage is essential for the proper preservation of cereals throughout the year and is not without dangers:
- Insects and parasites such as flour mites and weevils can live in the storage units and produce substances with an unpleasant smell and taste, free spores that lead to the growth of fungi, modify the nutritional value by reducing the content of carbohydrates and vitamins.
- The formation of mould and mycotoxins can lead to the development of toxic substances.
- Self-heating, caused by an excessively high level of moisture due to poor storage or drying problems, can damage the quality of the cereal.
- In addition, cross contamination, caused by residues of previously stored products, may also occur.
FRAGOLA AND CEREAL STORAGE
Fragola has been involved in the storage of raw materials and cereals for decades. Let’s take a look at Fragola’s operating principles for storage:
- Temperature and moisture control, to ensure the best preservation conditions. This takes place with temperature and moisture detection systems, the transfer and recycling of the material in the various silos for aeration, the use of ventilation, the possibility of using chilled air and nitrogen treatments.
- Cleaning of raw materials with the removal of foreign bodies such as stones, wood, ferrous materials, and dust separation.
- No pollution from different batches thanks to the rotary auger system for the complete emptying of the silos, conveyors and elevators designed not to leave residues inside the machines.
LET’S TAKE A LOOK AT THE PLANT IN DETAIL!
Reception is guaranteed by vehicle-accessible pits up to 18 metres long, with the option of folding platforms. All the discharge pits are complete with filters for suction and filtering the dust in the air during the discharge stage.
Cleaning takes place before ensiling with the use of:
- magnetic separator which intercepts any ferrous foreign bodies
- vibrating pre-cleaner for the separation of cereals from coarse foreign bodies such as wood, stones etc. and from dust
- air flow winnower for removing fine dust.
The galvanised steel silos in corrugated sheet metal for the storage of raw materials ensure the highest durability. The silos are made both with a conical bottom and with a flat bottom. The flat bottom silos are equipped with a channel system at the base for ventilation, rotary screws for complete emptying, devices at the top for condensation extraction, sensors for indicating the filling level and temperature sensors integrated in an automatic plant, fan for ventilation if necessary.
The storage of flours, such as soy or sunflower flour, takes place in horizontal storage units to ensure perfect extraction even after long periods of time and prevent all problems related to product blockages inside the silo. The loading and unloading of goods in the horizontal storage unit can be completely automatic.