Charles R Hurburgh

Dr. Charles R. Hurburgh, Charlie to most everyone, is a native Iowan from Rockwell City (Iowa, USA). He continues to operate the family farm, and is a professor of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering at Iowa State University. He has a bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctoral degree from Iowa State, and specializes in quality management systems with related traceability, measurement, and sensor technologies. He is the author of more than 250 technical and general articles on grain quality, measurement science, and grain marketing.

Dr. Hurburgh manages the Iowa State Grain Quality Research Laboratory and the extension-based Iowa Grain Quality Initiative. He serves on several advisory and editorial committees related to quality management standards and food safety regulations. Most recently his extension group was asked by the FDA to create training materials for inspections of bulk grain and grain processing facilities under the Food Safety Modernization Act. 

Charles Hurburgh photo
October 14, 2020 9:53 AM

Grain damage from the August 10 derecho storm and drought is widespread in the state and highly variable. The following is a list of five tips or good practices that farmers should consider this fall for good grain management, especially when working with suboptimal quality grain. At the end of...

Equipment and Machinery, Grain Handling and Storage
August 31, 2020 2:45 PM

The combination of drought, derecho and recent hot weather in Iowa increases the need to keep grain quality in check. As harvest nears, consider the following:

Crop Production, Grain Handling and Storage
May 28, 2020 2:58 PM

Iowa State’s Dr. Charles Hurburgh will be presenting on the topic “Ongoing Impacts from the 2019 Harvest and Early 2020 Crop Forecast” as an installment in the Grain Elevator and Processing Society’s...

Grain Handling and Storage
November 13, 2019 3:31 PM

Update Note: This was first published November 13, 2019. As of November 19, 2019 we are expecting a few days of warm weather; dewpoints will get above freezing. It would be counterproductive to keep the fans on during this period.

The late planting has caused higher moisture corn...

Grain Handling and Storage
October 29, 2019 5:48 PM

Recent reports have Iowa corn at about 40% harvested and Iowa soybeans about 66% harvested. The late crop has corn moistures running from around 19% in...

Grain Handling and Storage
October 17, 2019 1:41 PM

Temperatures fell into the low 30’s and upper 20’s in most of Iowa over the weekend of October 11-13.  Because of the very late planting season, some crops were immature enough to be injured by the freezing temperatures. This ICM Blog will address frost damage concerns to soybeans.  


Crop Production, Grain Handling and Storage
October 9, 2019 3:55 PM

An Iowa farmer sent me an email in anticipation of the freeze this weekend and I suspect many farmers are in the similar position of having mature crops with replant that may not be mature yet. Read more about my thoughts on how to handle this situation below.


Crop Production, Grain Handling and Storage
October 7, 2019 3:25 PM

A portion of Iowa’s corn crop is likely to experience a frost before naturally reaching maturity as a result of cool temperatures later this week. Natural maturity is often determined when a black layer is formed at the kernel tip. At this timeframe grain moisture is typically 28–35% moisture....

Crop Production, Grain Handling and Storage
October 26, 2017 3:40 PM

Up to this point in the harvest season we have been short on grain dry down and cooling weather. Corn moisture percentages have been hanging in the 20’s, sometimes in the upper 20’s. This past week eliminated much of the moisture, but favorable field dry down weather rarely continues into...

Grain Handling and Storage