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Drying and Curing: Using a sensor system designed for peanuts?

https://www.ars.usda.gov/news-events/news/research-news/2017/new-sensor-system-for-improved-peanut-drying/

I wanted y’alls input on this idea. Peanuts also need to be cured before they can be sold, and a new system will save companies tons of manpower and time from sampling peanuts.

Would this technology be useful in your grows, or would it cost more than it’s worth?

[quote=ARS USDA]If the peanuts are under-dried, over-dried or dried too slowly or quickly, it degrades their quality, and they will sell for a lower price, according to Samir Trabelsi, an ARS electronics engineer in Athens, Georgia.

Trabelsi and ARS agricultural engineer Micah Lewis designed a sensor network that monitors temperatures and humidity levels inside the semitrailers and the kernel moisture content. A weather station also tracks outdoor air temperatures, humidity levels and wind speed—which all can affect the peanut drying rate.

Trabelsi and Lewis recently upgraded the technology to provide real-time moisture readings to a computer or smart phone. That way, when peanuts are sufficiently dried, operators can turn off the drying blowers, and no one has to climb up into semitrailers to collect peanuts and check their moisture content.

The researchers also showed in a recent study that the real-time monitoring capability could save more than $20,000 a year in energy costs at a typical drying station. The savings are significant, considering Georgia has 130 peanut buying points. Peanut growers pay to use the privately owned stations, so the technology should lower the fees for growers, Trabelsi notes.[/quote]

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Wow, cool study. It will be interesting to see how this will translate to cannabis.

I suspect purely from a hypothetical stand point and using vegetables as a model. Need a citations here. Freeze drying would be my pure guess. Has the least change in preservation from the original to the final product.

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I’m guilty of eating mostly boiled peanuts when I lived in Georgia. This technology definitely could be useful for the Marijuana industry. I look forward to the day when I need several semi-trailers for the drying and curing process.

I’ve noticed humidity in my grow fluctuates based on the outside temp and humidity, as well as the temperature indoors. The temp change and relatively fast temp swing after lights off causes condensation and humidity peaks. I’m trying to solve this by slowing down the rate of temperature drop to allow the dehumidifiers to keep up. I imagine drying and curing are similar in that you want to be able to make small adjustments constantly in order to maintain exact temperature and humidity levels.

Could be another new startup business. Portable semi-trailer drying and curing facilities. Can be transported to anywhere, and rented periodically as needed year-round.

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We use to use the freeze driers in the food science labs in the 1980’s. I would love to see a cost comparison. Commercial freeze drying has come way down in price in the last thirty years. Hell, they make home models now.

I will find some papers on food presentation and and nutritional maintenance of the resulting products. We would have to see if they effect CBC and THC. My guess is they are not affected by freeze drying. At least from old personal experience as a naughty college student in the 1980’s.

HR-WhitePaper.pdf (6.7 MB) here is a freeze drying white paper. A little full of hyperbolely and self aggrandizement. But you will get the point.

Home freeze dryer

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Hunter,

That’s pretty cool! Innovation usually comes from using strategies from completely separate industries to do a task much more efficiently in another. You may be on to something here… I know for us we now have a new industry to look into! The way we look at it is there are very few other climates as harsh and product values so high than the cannabis industry. In the end it boils down to a few things; temperature, humidity and air quality. Specific to drying and curing many growers don’t spend the same amount of time on their drying rooms as their grow/veg rooms even though it’s just as important as it’s the last step before it goes to market. From our experience with many facilities the drying process should tail off over 4-7 days with a breathing period 2/3rds of the way through. This will allow the moisture on the outside of the bud to be removed, then have the moisture deep within the stem to draw out and finally be cured to desired humidity. Peanuts… who would have thought… Cheers!

Brandon Kion
Excel Air Systems

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