“It enables us to be able to harvest our crops and dry our crops and store our crops indefinitely,” said Tommy Young, a corn grower based in Tuckerman, Ark., who has been using on-farm storage for more than 30 years.
The ability to speed up the harvest also allows growers to avoid losses caused by weather, according to Jason Kelley, a UA Extension agronomist for wheat and feed grains. Several years ago, with a hurricane threatening, one producer with on-farm storage harvested around the clock and was nearly done by the time neighboring growers got started, Kelley said.
Having a way to store their own grain also allows growers to hold out for higher prices because during the fall harvest, prices often drop as elevators become flush with large quantities of grain, Stiles said. Growers can also defer their tax liability on the grain by holding on to it rather than selling.
On-farm storage also allows growers to sell directly to buyers. In Arkansas, the poultry industry in a large consumer of corn and offers attractive prices and a year-round market for producers, Stiles said.