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Maize Shelling Technique

Maize Shelling is the process of separating the corn kernels from the cob. This separation, done by hand or machine, is obtained by friction or by shaking the corn cobs so the kernels pull out.

The shelling process was carried out on the farm by our rural farmers using the shelling machine (sheller) for an easy and fast procedure.

Rural farmer using the maize shelling machine to remove shafts from the kernels

The shelling operations follow the harvest, and after the harvesting is completed, the maize cobs are gathered together for the shelling process. The process goes thus: the corn cobs are poured into the sheller and the machine begins to separate the kernels from the cob, leaving the kernels to pour out from one opening and the cobs out of another, this process is done repeatedly till the last maize cob is shelled.

Harvested maize cobs ready to be shelled

When the corn kernels are being separated, some are likely to contain shaft particles or cob dust from the shelling process, the rural farmers separate the kernels from the shaft using the shelling machine till all the kernels are completely separated from dirt and dust.

Maize kernels containing dusts and shaft before shelling

The separated shaft (shelled corn cobs) can be used as animal feed for livestock such as cattle. Corn cobs might seem like the throwaway part of corn, but they have their uses, and more uses are discovered all the time. Asides being used for livestock feed, traditional farm use the cobs for animal bedding, toilet paper substitute, landfill, and fuel. Modern industrial products made from corn cobs include absorbents for oil and hazardous waste, insecticides, fertilizer, and they are now being used to produce ethanol.

Corn cobs separated from the kernels

After shelling operations are completed, the corn kernels are bagged, sealed and transported to off-takers.

Bagged maize kernels ready to be off-taken

The shelling process is the last stage of our maize production. However, the maize kernels can still be broken down into grits and smooth powder form, depending on the specification of the off-taker.

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