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Dry edible bean producers in Nebraska typically deliver their crop to local bean dealers directly from the field, for either immediate sale or storage. Estimates are that less than 5 percent of Nebraska growers store part or all of their dry edible bean harvest in on-farm storage. In contrast, a much higher percentage of dry edible bean producers in other growing regions, particularly North Dakota and Michigan, use on-farm storage in their management plan. In Nebraska, corn and wheat producers are most likely to store all or part of their harvested grain on-farm.
Why do so few Nebraska dry edible bean producers store their crop on-farm? Are dry edible beans difficult to store? Are highly specialized handling and storage facilities required? Do storage and handling costs exceed any economic advantage to on-farm storage? Is marketing the crop stored on-farm difficult and unpredictable? Are storage and handling losses excessive? A University of Nebraska survey sought answers to these questions. The results are summarized here.