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IX. Harvesting & storage
• Harvesting the crop should be done at the right time. Reaping too early or too late affects yield and seed quality. Timely harvest and threshing will ensure good grain quality, high market value, and consumer acceptance.
• The ﬁeld should be drained 1 week prior to harvesting.
• Harvesting should be done when at least 75% of the grains are matured. If the crop is harvested without proper maturity it leads to loss of viability of grains.
• The harvested material should be dried in the ﬁeld for 2-3 days.
• The grain should be free from iner t material after threshing and winnowing. The winnowed grains should be sun dried until the moisture content reaches less than 13%.
• Both over drying and under drying will lead to breakage of the grain during processing. High moister content during storage leads to loss of viability due to increased grain respiration and attack of storage insects and pests. Storing paddy
• Paddy seed is sun dried for 2-3 days continuously and then stored in gunny bags on indigenously made 4-5 feet stand to prevent pest infestation.
• Paddy seed is stored in small containers with bamboo called as ‘butta’ (in Telugu). The container is ﬁlled with paddy seed and covered with straw and then closed with cow dung paste.
• Seed for consumption purpose are stored in big size storage structure called ‘Gadhi’ with a capacity of 100-150 kunchas (300-450 kgs) of paddy seed.
• The grains should be stored in a place which is free from storage pests.
• They should not be stored in areas with less moisture content.
• The storage structure should not have perforations or holes as it helps the pests to invade. The storage place should have good aeration.
• Control of storage pests like moth and weevil infestation in paddy should be done .For every 50 kg of grain storage, 200 gram salt is placed. In a bag of 100 kg paddy, 200gram of salt is added after ﬁlling 50 kg and the remaining 50 kg of grain is ﬁlled by addition of 200 gram salt for every 50 kgs grain to control the moth and weevil infestation in paddy.