• • • Ways to avoid low falling numbers in grains. How accurate is the falling number test?
The Canadian Grain Commission (CGC) published feedback it received from a 60-day consultation process with industry stakeholders about whether falling numbers and DON should be included as official grading factors.
The CGC received 29 written submissions and held four teleconference calls, receiving comments mainly from producer and commodity groups and industry associations, that expressed concerns about the reliability, cost and efficiency of these tests.
In its summary of the feedback, CGC stated on its website: ‘While the accuracy of analytical tests such as those used to assess falling number and DON may be better than that of visual inspection for some quality factors, we clearly heard that other considerations, such as impacts on efficiency at delivery, impacts on the overall efficiency of the grain- handling system and if costs will be transferred to producers, need to be understood before further steps are taken to add falling number or DON as official grading factors. Any broad-based changes must balance the desire to make the grain-grading system more accurate and objective with the associated costs and implications for the sector.’
A CGC spokesperson said in an email, “We heard from many respondents that the grading system needs to remain efficient and inexpensive, and that adding analytical testing would likely increase costs. Based on the feedback received during the discussion, the CGC is not taking steps to add falling number and DON as official grain-grading factors at this time. However, several producer group submissions also highlighted the potential benefit of extending the CGC’s ‘subject to inspector’s grade and dockage’ arbitration service to falling number and DON results. There may be an opportunity to explore the possibility of expanding this service to quality factors outside the grading system through the Canada Grain Act Review.”