Moisture Migration in Transported and Stored Grains

Moisture Migration and Temperature Changes: Grain Storage and Transportation

A grain silo facility

Uncontrolled temperature changes in grain storage and transportation systems can lead to moisture migration which can significantly impact grain quality. The effects of moisture migration on grain quality depend on the type of storage system, and the duration of the stored grain. 


In this section, we will discuss the causes of moisture migration, its effects on grain quality, and what you can do as a farmer.


What is Moisture Migration?

pictures of two silo bins depicting moisture migration
Moisture migration in grain storage systems: (a) summer time when grain temperature is lower than outside temperature; (b) winter time when grain temperature is higher than outside temperature.

Moisture migration happens when there is a considerable difference between the grain temperature inside the bin and the temperature outside. This is why it is crucial to properly regulated your harvested grain temperature throughout the seasons.


Lack of temperature control contributes to grain spoilage more than any other factor. Therefore, farmers will need to use every tool at their disposal to protect their lives’ work.


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Moisture Migration Issues in Grain Storage and Transportation

Moisture migration is a massive issue for grain producers and transporters. It can lead to considerable losses in the form of mold, spoilage, and insect infestations.


The storage of grain is a complex process that requires careful management of moisture levels. It is an issue that needs to be tackled at all stages – from harvesting to storage to transportation.

Changing Climate and the Need for Remote Monitoring of Grain Storage Spaces

A 3D grain silo
Aeration and the movement of air within a grain storage silo.

Fast-changing weather conditions are driving the need for technological interventions for grain storage spaces. In recent years, we have seen extreme weather conditions due to climate change that made us re-evaluate post-harvest grain handling methods.


The need to keep harvested grain safe is driving the adoption of automated aeration systems–enabling farmers to control grain temperatures by setting desired temperature parameters easily.


Aside from these devices, there is also a growing trend for remote monitoring systems for grain storage spaces. These systems can be installed as mobile apps, allowing farmers to monitor their grain storages remotely.

How to Make Sure Your Grain is Safe – Three Steps to Ensure Grain Moisture Migration is Under Control

Moisture movements within stored grain is a serious problem for the grain industry. The good news is that it can be controlled by adopting some simple practices.

The following are the three steps you can take to ensure moisture migration is under control:

  1. Control the temperature and humidity of the storage facility to minimize condensation on the floor and walls. 

  2. Keep a close eye on your grain and monitor for any signs of spoilage.

  3. Use an aerator to increase air circulation in the facility.


Understanding how moisture migration affects your stored grain is a necessary step to saving your live’s work. It’s bad enough that the effect of climate change is already having a global impact on agricultural yields. And unpredictable weather conditions are having severe effects on stored grains. Therefore, farmers who want to keep their stored grain safe may have to adopt technological solutions.


To help you monitor better so you can focus on other things that matter, we have designed our grain storage monitoring systems focusing on the current challenges you are facing as a farmer. Check it out here.