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CropTalk: Talking Corn Quality Traits

February 2020

Commodities are either fungible, meaning that they are traded as a class on one market price, or non-fungible, meaning they are traded based on specific quality measures for each unit. Corn is the quintessential fungible commodity – a bushel of corn is a bushel of corn, and corn from Missouri isn’t any different from corn in Ohio, apart from the local cash basis price. Most corn grown in the U.S. is used for fuel or feed; only about 19% of the U.S. crop is used for food. Confused about the difference between food and feed? Well, feed is the food you feed food. Food-grade corn is consumable by humans; it is grown under contract from specific buyers. There are two main types of food-grade corn sold by Beck’s: hard endosperm, and waxy.

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