Living in the prairie provinces has its ups and downs, the farming communities are what makes this province known for endless fields of wheat and thousands of grain bins you can see on the sides of the road. What you don’t realize is the potential hazards that farmers encounter from inhaling constant fumes from machinery along with the spores from not only moldy hay, but also the grain bins can generate moisture from inside and cause mold. Being from Saskatchewan & Alberta got mold? knows that the removal of mold from the bins is a necessary procedure.
Farmers Lungs–Farmer’s Lung is a disease which is caused by chronic inhalation of spores from moldy hay. It is usually seen in people who work with hay. As time progresses, some people may become allergic to this mold present in the hay thus causing symptoms. As the exposure to this moldy hay becomes chronic, symptoms of respiratory illness start to surface. Once an individual starts having symptoms, there is a high likelihood that he or she will always be at risk for having symptoms whenever being exposed to hay mold.
What Are The Causes Of Farmer’s Lung?-Farmer’s Lung as stated is caused due to exposure to spores of hay mold, especially in places which do not have good ventilation like a barn.
What Are Some Of The Symptoms Of Farmer’s Lung?-After being exposed to moldy hay for a significant amount of time, the individual will start to notice the following symptoms:
Increased coughing with abnormal production of phlegm
Fever with at times chills
Shortness of breath
A tightness sensation in the chest.
Fungus in Stored Grain-Often mold or “fungal” organisms enter stored grains on different foreign materials. They may be present on farm machinery or as spores found on stored seeds. These organisms are more active when seed-moisture contents are high. Accidental wetting of grain may also stimulate these spores to germinate and cause further mold development.
With the introduction of a mold species, numerous other molds usually develop in succession. Warm temperature and high moisture are two factors that have an effect on this process. The result is that grain quality may diminish due to heating and spoilage, packing or caking effects, poor germination, and production of off-odors.
Some by-products formed by these fungal organisms may be toxic to farm animals and cause other related problems. These mycotoxins are only detectable by lengthy and complex chemical analysis.
Preventing Fungus Growth-Well designed and constructed granaries are required to prevent mould infestations and preserve grain quality during long-term storage. Smaller quantities of grain will cool and dry quicker than larger masses. Also, in bins holding large volumes of grain, moisture may condense at the surface or sides, providing a suitable environment for fungal organisms to develop. So, having more, smaller capacity granaries is better than a few larger ones.
Cooling the grain temperature to -8°C will help inactivate mould growth. Aeration can be used to help reduce grain temperature. You should start the fans when grain is placed in the bin, allowing the grain to cool to the equivalent of outside night temperatures.
At 0°C there may be some efficiency if airflow is reversed. In this case the outside air is chilling the grain, but not removing moisture. In this circumstance, this may reduce the chance for moisture condensation to occur near the top center of the grain mass.
In the case that you have mold growing on the inside of your grain bin, it is most likely that your grain will not yield the best price possible when it comes time to sell. We believe it is important to let you know that once the grain is out of the bin and sold for a lower price, it is important that you have the grain bin cleaned properly and thoroughly in order to prevent future losses.
If you have a mold problem in any or all of your grain bins we can help. We can help! Call now