Management of temporary grain stores

Grain may need to be stored temporarily, prior to drying and moving to longer-term stores. However, the storage of all grain should be in a manner that protects against contamination and does not compromise its quality.

Grain storage guide home

Top tips for temporary grain storage

If storing grain temporarily:

  • Measure moisture content (MC) as soon as possible
  • Identify grain batches at or above 18% MC and prioritise it for grain drying
  • Use the AHDB Safe storage time calculator to prioritise grain entry to dryers/longer-term storage
  • Consider cooling grain* to 15°C to prolong safe storage time before drying
  • Be aware of any restrictions (e.g. with assurance schemes) on temporary storage, including holding grain outside
  • Generally, temporary stores may only be used until 31 October (unless a temporary derogation is in place)

*To cool grain, consider the use of grain stirrers or ambient air and temporary ducts/pedestals or, for small bulks, a cooling spear.

Holding grain outside

The Red Tractor combinable crops standards state that: “the holding of grain is only allowed outside of a building in exceptional circumstances and for a maximum of five days, unless a derogation has been sought.”

Safe grain storage calculator

The AHDB Safe storage time calculator uses information entered on the moisture and temperature levels for stored grain to assess the risks from mould and mycotoxins’ development, loss of germination and the potential risk for attack by insects and mites. The times indicated by the calculator commence immediately after harvest and determine the safe storage time for batches or bulks of grain.

Safe grain storage calculator


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