- What do hull-less oats function as?
ANSWER. Technically, because the U.S. Standards for oats do not include hulless oats (Avina nuda) in the definition of oats or “other grains,” they function as foreign material. As a practical matter, however, the absence of any distinguishing physical characteristics prevents inspectors from differentiating hulless oat groats from dehulled common oat groats. Thus, it is impractical for inspectors to include hulless oats in reported FM percentages. In response to industry concern over possible blending of hulless oats or presence of excessive dehulled oats, inspectors may, upon request, include the following statement in the remarks section of the certificate: “Sample contains ____ % dehulled oats.”
- Are discolored oat groats caused by weathering or frost considering damage?
ANSWER. No, current visual references/standards address discolorations associated with heating/respiration (O-2.0/3.0) and badly ground or weather conditions (O-1.0). Unless the discoloration of the groat meets the minimum criteria of one of these slides, the oat is considered sound.
- Can sprout sockets be taken as damage?
ANSWER. Yes. Although rarely seen, when sufficient evidence is present to suggest germination (sprouting) has occurred, whether the sprout is present or not (broken off), the oat groat is considered damaged.
- Do the U.S. Standards for Oats include Black Oats?
ANSWER. No. The standards only cover the white, yellow, and red oats. As such, a sample of Black oats (Avena strigosa) would be certified “Not Standardized Grain.” If found in a sample of white or red oats, black oats function as Foreign Material.
- If a sample of oats contains heat-damaged wheat, does the heat-damaged wheat function as Heat Damage and Other Grains, whereby it would be deducted twice in the determination of sound oats?
ANSWER. Only heat damage; the percentage of “other grains” is only to include the sound or otherwise damaged other grains (e.g., mold, damaged-by-heat, sprout, etc.) present in the sample. This approach takes into account critical grade determining factor information without imposing unnecessary and excessive deductions.
- Can a sample of oat groats, not hull-less oats, be graded under the Oat standards?