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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Pack Factor Study
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1 - Problem
2 - On-Site Measurements
3 - Project Objectives & Goals
4 - Experimental Design
5 - Project Investigators
6 - Collaborator List

Developing New Stored Grain Pack Factors
(A collaborative project with the University of Georgia , Kansas State University, and the University of Kentucky)

Existing packing factor data are of unknown reliability and their accuracy has been questioned by the industry.  Accurate data are required for government-mandated inventory control and are a crucial component of new quality management systems being developed to enable source verification in the grain handling industry.

Project Impact

New packing factors will allow warehouse officials and stored grain managers to accurately assess and track stored-grain inventories.

What is Pack factor?
(Pack | Packing Factor |Compaction)
It is a correction factor used to accurately
determine weight of grain stored in a grain bin

     use grain volume measurements
     combine with grain test weight (bulk density)
     accounts for the additional compaction from

       the overbearing pressure of grain above

                  Number of Grain Bins Measured To Date
                      -  West of the Mississippi River  =  120
  East of the Mississippi River   =     50

We are inviting farmers and grain elevators from priority locations to collaborate with us on measuring bins for selected grain crops. Please contact Josephine Boac or Mark Casada if you would like to collaborate on obtaining this on-site data.  See "On-Site Measurements" for an overview of the on-site data collection process, or contact Josephine Boac for more information.

Priority Locations for 2012 and 2013


 West of the Mississippi River:
Nebraska, North and South Dakota, Montana, Idaho, Washington, Oregon, California, Missouri, Arkansas, Colorado, Wyoming, Texas, Iowa, Minnesota, Oklahoma, Kansas


 East of the Mississippi River:
Illinois, Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, Tennessee, Georgia, Kentucky

2012 GEAPS Exchange Presentation: 
"Updating the Pack Factor for Calculation of Bushels from Volumetric Measurements." (view pdf)


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Last Modified: 2/9/2015
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