Possible Amendments To The Maize Grading Regulations

Published: 05/07/2021

The Market Working Group of the Maize Forum Steering Committee proposed a change to the definition of frost damaged maize kernels in the grading regulations.  Agbiz Grain’s Quality Committee opposed the proposed changes to the definition after it became clear that the grading experts on maize in South Africa who conduct training and who are handling disputes on behalf of members in the value chain are in disagreement.  Not only on the current definition but also on the new proposed definition.  Consequently, Agbiz Grain organized a workshop on Tuesday 29th of June in order for the experts to reach agreement and to finalise an acceptable definition to be tabled to the Market Working Group of the Maize Forum Steering Committee.

Possible amendments to the maize grading regulations have been approved and will be submitted to DALRRD for consideration as phase 1 on 5 July 2021. See the underneath table. This follows after the outcome of the Agbiz Grain workshop of Tuesday 29th June 2021 when consensus should be reached on the definition of frost damaged kernels.

Amend definition of frost damaged kernels“frost damaged” means maize kernels that are covered with wrinkles on both sides of the kernel to the top of the crown and have a dull “shiny” appearance. Maize kernels of which the bran is flaking is considered frost damaged if signs of frost damage are present

Approved by majority

(Agbiz Grain has concern)
Replace ‘mouldy’ with ‘fungi-infected’"fungi-infected kernels" means maize of which the kernels or pieces of kernels are visibly infected with fungiApproved by majority
 (a) are characterized by black, blue, green, yellow or white fungi growth anywhere on the kernel, or visible fungal growth underneath the bran layer of kernelsApproved by majority
 (b)are infected by ear-rot and are characterised by red, pink or brown discolorations. The kernels are partially to completely infectedApproved by majority
Defective kernelRemoval of ‘chalky kernels’ from definitionApproved
 Water damage and discoloration (based on SAGL study results): Keep definition in grading regulations but define as non-defectiveApproved
 Due to sample limitation white maize can be used as reference for yellow maize: SAGL reportApproved
Coffee stained maizeKeep definition of coffee-stained maize kernels as currently in the grading regulations. Two samples are not sufficient to change regulationsApproved
Heat damageKeep definition of heat damaged as currently in the grading regulationsApproved