Which Alberta farmers are buying dryers????

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Which Alberta farmers are buying dryers????

Feb 11, 2020 | 08:42 1 Program announced for Alberta to buy dryers?

Why don't they just put them at elevators where the process of drying could be sped up exponentially. ????

I am really confused as to how this helps any efficiency in the process....

Blast away ....I am a little confused...

While I understand the importance of this. ....I think it would be more important to look at the whole issue...


Once again governments being reactive instead of proactive? ???? Reply With Quote
  • 1 Like


  • blackpowder's Avatar Feb 11, 2020 | 08:54 2 $2M even at a 50/50 cost share doesn't buy much.
    New terminal here got smart.
    Pay the farmer to do the drying. They don't want one. Reply With Quote
    Feb 11, 2020 | 09:02 3 I thought we have been told that our growing season is much longer now , why does anyone need driers going foreword ?
    Seems odd eh ? Reply With Quote
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  • Feb 11, 2020 | 09:02 4
    Quote Originally Posted by blackpowder View Post
    $2M even at a 50/50 cost share doesn't buy much.
    New terminal here got smart.
    Pay the farmer to do the drying. They don't want one.
    Elevators have the ability to blend on the go....if they are buying slightly tough grain and receive a few loads of dry , they have the ability to blend faster.

    Drying on the farm to me makes no sense...

    While elevators don't want the dryers ...graincos have been more than obligatory to take government money for other projects...

    P&H was given 10million for their flour mill a few years back...

    And graincos have no issue asking for help when dealing with railways in 13/14...

    Help the bottom line ...grainco has no problem making the call to government....

    Help the farmer ....not a chance and the government delays saying they are waiting on more info.... Reply With Quote
    Feb 11, 2020 | 09:07 5 I guess the problem I have is.... graincos have the money to build fertilizer blending plants and chemicals sheds....but no money or interest in their core business of grain...

    Blending fertilizer plants ,when almost every farmer has 4 tank drills and mid row banders, seems like a money loser.....

    Chem sheds are doing well with the independents...

    Although when my grain grade depends on how much inputs I buy from a grainco....you know this is a phucked industry... Reply With Quote
    Feb 11, 2020 | 09:12 6 Wouldnt a $2M credit on carbon tax for guys that used extra propane, NG and electricity make more sense? Whats $2M of handling systems gonna buy across alberta, 2 ft of 10 gauge wire per farm? Im gonna impatiently wait to see what our brains in sask are gonna do. Reply With Quote
    Feb 11, 2020 | 09:15 7
    Quote Originally Posted by Daylate View Post
    Wouldnt a $2M credit on carbon tax for guys that used extra propane, NG and electricity make more sense? Whats $2M of handling systems gonna buy across alberta, 2 ft of 10 gauge wire per farm? Im gonna impatiently wait to see what our brains in sask are gonna do.
    My guess is nothing....or maybe if they spend money on R&D on a grain dryer there will be a 9 dollar return for every dollar spent....sarcasm.... Reply With Quote
    makar's Avatar Feb 11, 2020 | 09:36 8 Terminal drying don't stop your your grain heating in the bin or rotting in the field. Reply With Quote

  • blackpowder's Avatar Feb 11, 2020 | 09:47 9 These last four years have been shit for wet grain alright. I have no fix.
    I see the farms here getting larger and 2/3 of the main concerns within 15 miles now have dryers. Cheaper than a combine lol. Costs vary wildly depending on access to 3ph and HP gas.
    I can see it being more efficient for a terminal to take in a finished product. Reply With Quote
    Feb 11, 2020 | 09:48 10
    Quote Originally Posted by makar View Post
    Terminal drying don't stop your your grain heating in the bin or rotting in the field.
    True but it can be handled quicker at an elevator than at a farm....the problem with calling for more production in western Canada ...is the infrastructure to move and handle grain is for 1970 production...

    Everything from railway , grain company and farm infrastructure is decades behind....

    It includes more capacity, additional drying capacity because if the environmentalists are right ...this grain drying issue won't be a one of event...

    I still think the smart thing is to offer incentives for grain companies to do the drying at their facilities....going forward... Reply With Quote
    LEP
    Feb 11, 2020 | 10:38 11
    Quote Originally Posted by bucket View Post
    True but it can be handled quicker at an elevator than at a farm....the problem with calling for more production in western Canada ...is the infrastructure to move and handle grain is for 1970 production...

    Everything from railway , grain company and farm infrastructure is decades behind....

    It includes more capacity, additional drying capacity because if the environmentalists are right ...this grain drying issue won't be a one of event...

    I still think the smart thing is to offer incentives for grain companies to do the drying at their facilities....going forward...
    Sorry bucket but from where I sit, it looks like the entire grain handling system has been built in the last 20 years. Concrete elevators, 134 car grain loops. But it only pays to have these facilities turn. To bring in tough grain and dry it, slows it down.

    I make sure my grain stays in condition to sell throughout the year. I make decisions at harvest that I have to live with. ie. Take it tough and deal with it or leave it until spring and thrash it then. My responsibility doesn't end when I unload the combine, which I think you keep arguing. Not wanting to buy bins, not wanting to dry tough grain.

    It sucks, but it is a risk of farming that you have to deal with grain that won't store. If you want to sell your grain through the year, I guess you have to be able to store it. We aren't like the US where corn is a pretty uniform commodity and they don't need many separations for Soybeans. Farmers can sell the grain and hold the paper.

    Flame away.
    Last edited by LEP; Feb 11, 2020 at 10:41.
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  • Feb 11, 2020 | 10:55 12
    Quote Originally Posted by LEP View Post
    Sorry bucket but from where I sit, it looks like the entire grain handling system has been built in the last 20 years. Concrete elevators, 134 car grain loops. But it only pays to have these facilities turn. To bring in tough grain and dry it, slows it down.

    I make sure my grain stays in condition to sell throughout the year. I make decisions at harvest that I have to live with. ie. Take it tough and deal with it or leave it until spring and thrash it then. My responsibility doesn't end when I unload the combine, which I think you keep arguing. Not wanting to buy bins, not wanting to dry tough grain.

    It sucks, but it is a risk of farming that you have to deal with grain that won't store. If you want to sell your grain through the year, I guess you have to be able to store it. We aren't like the US where corn is a pretty uniform commodity and they don't need many separations for Soybeans. Farmers can sell the grain and hold the paper.

    Flame away.
    I won't argue the points except to say that is seems the canadian system is moving to a one grade as well...While graincos might buy a 1,2,3 amber durum the price spreads between them said they are probably selling a 3cwad regularly...the higher grades are for niche markets or ensuring quality to the lower grades while they can still make grade....which also means they are blending at the elevator as well..

    Here is my point about drying ...take a 100,000 tonne elevator with 50000 tonnes of dry grain and 50000 tonnes of tough grain....they blend it numerous different ways and may have to dry 25000 tonnes to make it all work...

    On a farm may be the same percentages but the logistics to do so are far more efficient at an elevator...

    Sometimes and in this case everyone has to sit down and ask what is best for the industry as a whole as opposed to what good for only part of it.

    If an elevator can't make a business case to run a dryer ...how does an individual farmer?

    There are dryers at graincos in Swift Current that are not even going to start up...but maybe an incentive to do so would make more sense for them to fire it up???? Than to put farmers on the hook for purchasing and operating dryers.


    Other wise the same thing may happen on farms where the dryer sits for years....and lot rots?????

    This isn't an argument or not meant to be...but the logistics seem that the drying would be done quicker at an elevator considering blending abilities and logistics???

    I have bought bins but have been talking to myself about a dryer for years....like you said maybe saving a grade by going earlier at 17 moisture...

    I think about it...and would make sense but the capital outlay and operating is clouding the decision...many factors too consider......and yet had i done it I could have looked like a genius....lol....that wouldn't happen...

    Good discussion...thats the point of bringing it up....

    Off topic....How does an elevator gain efficiencies after loading a train in 24 hours only to have it sit for a week on the siding?????
    Last edited by bucket; Feb 11, 2020 at 11:02.
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    Feb 11, 2020 | 10:56 13 LEP, I agree.

    Grain has to stay in condition. Producers need to keep control of their product until they want to sell. Producers will stand for the risk and will usually be rewarded.
    To be able to market an entire harvest of tough grain and make a profit greater than the on farm cost to condition it is dreaming. In fact this harvest proved that. Tough grain turned away on the driveway.
    Now it's out of condition or the producer is forced to take it home and try and keep it in condition till a market is found, if there is one.
    Then worry about it all the time. Forget it. I like a good night's rest.

    To add to Bucket's last comment: To spend the capital to install a dryer at an elevator and then never use it is really bad business
    Last edited by farming101; Feb 11, 2020 at 11:03.
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  • Feb 11, 2020 | 10:59 14 I agree wholeheartedly with LEP. I already am uncomfortable with dealing with line companies and terminals so don’t want to rely on them to handle my tough/wet grain issues “at their convenience”. Reply With Quote
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  • blackpowder's Avatar Feb 11, 2020 | 12:45 15 Our nearby loop track leaves the engines on. Dropped off one night, gone the next. RRs won't have engines sitting.
    Agree it's shitty for some of the older loading points. And regions.
    Walmart gains efficiency by having ready to sell products put on their shelves.
    So far... local bids do reflect the efficiencies. As long as that still happens through open competition.
    New dryers really only a younger generation benefit. Cheap then.
    Unused likely only in a prolonged dry pattern here.
    If it makes anyone feel better I looked at application. Dryer upgrades only. Not new install. And only energy efficiency upgrades not capacity. A few parts that's it. Monitor cables for bins covered though.
    Last edited by blackpowder; Feb 11, 2020 at 13:13.
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    Feb 11, 2020 | 13:06 16 Don't depend on the terminal to dry your grain. I farm in NE sask, there are 6 terminals within 60km of me and they all have dryers. During a wet harvest they are stuffed full of wet grain and having them take your grain when you want to deliver it is difficult. Cost of drying is also a big factor. The terminals charge between 4 and 10 times what it costs me to dry. I'm on single phase and propane. When you and all your neighbors have wet grain the drying charges seem to rise, grain co s don't mind making a little more money off of farmers in desperate situations. Pickup an old batch dryer at an auction, heated aeration, a used continuous dryer or go buy a new one. It will pay for itself several times over. Reply With Quote

  • fjlip's Avatar Feb 11, 2020 | 13:28 17 Agree, major reason we started drying on this farm in 1974 is to be able to harvest at all. To keep grain in storable moisture, to gain a grade, save DAMP deductions. Then in 1985 natural gas, (thanks Grant), and on farm drying has made the difference between profitability or bankruptcy. Best investment highest return by far. Or to sleep at night. Of course all my results are based on a 46 year investment history, may not apply today. And elevators had NO dryers back then. As a side higher humidity in NE Sk. rarely allows drying with fans. Reply With Quote

  • Feb 11, 2020 | 17:28 18 Bucket , i wouldnt ever consider farming without a dryer . There are benefits you dont even think of besides the obvious ones
    There is still the odd farm here without a dryer but they are few and far between
    Couldnt begin to count the times we wouldnt of went to the field if we didnt have one , only to find its dry after the wet bin is full
    It counts for way more than an extra combine
    We start drying on day one and it costs about half a cent a bu to dry in august
    Wouldnt have it any other way Reply With Quote
    Feb 11, 2020 | 18:53 19 yes I understand what you are saying and have thought about a dryer over the years.....but this was the exception for damp grain not the rule...

    I think about it to maybe be able to save a grade if the weather was turning...the difference this year was the crop was still immature when we should have normally been combining....then the weather did not co-operate .

    in 30 years plus all the years prior on dad's farm and his experience ...a dryer wasn't needed....but times change...

    its something on the list.... Reply With Quote
    Feb 11, 2020 | 18:56 20 IMHO when you are shopping tough or damp grain you are asking for bids on distressed product.

    If the buyer can handle it, it's a buying opportunity because very few will bid on it.

    It's like taking sick calves to the market because you don't want them to die at home.

    Never ends well. Reply With Quote