Reader question: Does green content go down in the bin?

Reader: “I was always under the impression that green counts will diminish in the bin if they are caused by immature seeds at harvest. I was always told if green counts are caused by frost that the counts will reduce in the bin over time. What is the answer on both scenarios?”


Green caused by immature seeds at harvest. Very green immature seeds that end up in the combine could eventually shrivel up and become dockage. If not, then they’ll stay green and affect green counts. Some researchers found that long-term storage may decrease green seed count slightly, but farmers should not count on a significant improvement in storage – especially if seeds are very dry.

Green caused by frost. Frost stops the green-clearing enzyme, and this green is generally considered to be “locked in”. It may drop slightly in storage, but significant movement – enough to improve grade – is not likely.

With a grade-reducing amount of green seed, talk to grain buyers to see if your green count assessment matches what they find, and ask around for potential blending opportunities if the percentage is high.

Further reading:

Storing, handling and delivery tips from the Canadian Grain Commission