Grain Receiving, Cleaning and Conditioning

GEAPS Online Learning courses are available anytime on-demand. Each course takes approximately 10 hours to complete and can be completed at any pace over five weeks. Courses must be completed within a five-week period that begins the day you register. After registering, learners will be sent a confirmation email, then you’re ready to start learning!  


$495 for members
$795 for non-members.  

Course Description: This course will teach students the basic principles of milling by covering each step of the milling process in detail.  During the first half of the course, students will learn about wheat receiving, handling, storage and blending, including mold mitigation and pest control. The second half of the course will focus on wheat separation and cleaning as well as comparing wheat conditioning vs. wheat tempering.

Course Goals: In this course, students will be able to identify equipment used in the milling process and apply knowledge gained to equipment application. They will also be able to compare and contrast different equipment used in processing as well as examine conditioning versus tempering. This course will expose students to the milling process by covering information in each step of the process, from beginning to end.

Target Audience: This course is designed for milling engineers, operation managers, production managers head millers and shift managers.


Mark Fowler  Kansas State UniversitySee Bio

Mark Fowler is the Associate Director of the IGP Institute as well as the Flour Milling and Grain Processing Curriculum Manager. Mark’s expertise include technical flour milling, plant operations management and food and employee safety program development. Mark received both his B.S. in Milling Science and Management and his M.S. in Agricultural Economics from Kansas State University. Prior to joining the Department of Grain Science at Kansas State University, Mark developed an interest in the international milling business working for Seaboard Corporation as the Overseas Milling Technologist. He worked on projects in several developing countries including Ecuador, Guyana and Haiti. Mark also served as the Technical Director of the Africa Division within Seaboard’s Overseas Group in Durban, South Africa. His work in Africa extended from Angola, Nigeria, Mozambique, Lesotho and Zambia to the Congo. Before his employment at Seaboard, Mark gained extensive milling experience working for Cargill in both Los Angeles and Wichita, KS.

Chris Miller, PhD  EnGrain LLCSee Bio

Dr. Miller is the Senior Director of Research Innovation and Quality at Engrain LLC. He is responsible for the Engrain Innovation Lab and oversees product development, product improvement and customer innovation. Prior to his position at Engrain, he was a faculty member in the Department of Grain Science and Industry at Kansas State University, including serving as the Buhler Chair for Industrial Milling Instruction. His areas of specialization include wheat flour milling, processing specialty grains, grain cleaning systems and cereal grain biochemistry with an interest in wheat and sorghum. Dr. Miller has a Bachelor of Science in milling science, a Master of Science in grain science and a Doctorate in biochemistry from Kansas State University. Prior to returning to K-State to pursue additional education, he worked for Quaker Oats in the oat flour business unit.

Carlos Campabadal, PhD  Kansas State UniversitySee Bio

Dr. Campabadal is a program specialist focusing in the areas of grain storage, quality management and processing, and feed manufacturing for the International Grains Program at Kansas State University. He also coordinates the Spanish-speaking outreach program, and handles teaching and research responsibilities in feed manufacturing and grain storage at K-State’s Department of Grain Science & Industry. Carlos works as a consultant in grain handling, quality and storage and in feed manufacturing in Latin America, Southeast Asia, and North Africa. His professional experience includes working as a project and maintenance engineer in the farm and feed manufacturing industry in Costa Rica.

Shawn Thiele  Kansas State UniversitySee Bio

Shawn Thiele grew up in Norton, Kansas and attended Kansas State University, where he received his B.S. in Milling Science and Management with a minor in Agribusiness. He worked for Quaker Oats in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, for eight years in many roles with the most recent being Process Improvement Engineer, before returning to Manhattan, Kansas in 2012. Shawn currently works for the Grain Science Department at Kansas State University as the Milling Operations Manager. His time is spent overseeing the operations of the KSU flour and pilot mills and assisting in teaching some of the outreach courses at IGP Institute.

Course of Study

Week 1Details

Lecture 1 – Wheat Receiving
This lecture will cover the basics of wheat receiving, including different modes of delivery, sampling methods and receiving systems. It will discuss practices to illustrate grain inventory and the importance of bin and inventory management
Lecturer: Mark Fowler

Lecture 2 – U.S. Grain Grading System, Standards and Sample Collection
This lecture will present and review the U.S. Grading Standards of Wheat. It will also outline various sampling methods with an emphasis on the importance of obtaining a representative sample while ensuring applicability to an international perspective.
Lecturer: Mark Fowler

Week 2Details

Lecture 3 – Wheat Storage and Handling
Lecture 3 will provide students a basic understanding of the principles of grain storage. What types of grain molds and mycotoxins commonly affect stored wheat? How can they be mitigated? How do you identify and monitor pests in flour mill and storage structures? What are the best pest control techniques?
Lecturer: Carlos Campabadal

Lecture 4 – Wheat Storage Principles
This lecture will continue discussing different pest control techniques, including different types of grain fumigants. It will also teach students how to perform wheat aeration and discusses options for temporary grain storage.
Lecturer: Carlos Campabadal

Week 3Details

Lecture 5 – Wheat Blending
Lecture 5 will consider the benefits of blending wheat, including as a method to control costs, provide consistency and differentiate between products. It will also cover balancing the need to blend to customer requirements while optimizing mill performance and extraction.
Lecturer: Mark Fowler

Lecture 6 – Wheat Cleaning Part I
This lecture is the first of three lectures that will provide a thorough examination of wheat cleaning. Students will learn the different separation methods of cleaning grain for quality and the use of magnets to clean the grain for plant and equipment protection.  In addition, aspiration will be covered in depth, including the principles of aspiration, how it works, why it is critical and where to apply it in the wheat cleaning process.
Lecturer: Chris Miller

Week 4Details

Lecture 7 – Wheat Cleaning Part II
Lecture 7 is part two in the series of wheat cleaning lectures and will examine how wheat size, shape and density affect the wheat cleaning process. Equipment covered in this lecture includes combination machines that use several separation principles to clean grain, and gravity machines that use density to make separations.
Lecturer: Dr. Chris Miller

Lecture 8 – Wheat Cleaning Part III
The last lecture in the wheat cleaning series will investigate the final stages of preparing the grain for milling by using friction and abrasion to remove dirt, dust and even parts of the outer bran layers, specifically wheat scouring vs. peeling vs. pearling. Students will also gain a better understanding of how individual pieces of equipment is combined to form a cleaning process and factors to consider when designing a cleaning system.
Lecturer: Mark Fowler

Week 5Details

Lecture 9 – Optical Sorting – Theory, Practice and Application
Lecture 9 will familiarize students with optical sorting by defining the four basic components of the optical sorter and providing an understanding of the capabilities and capacities of machine sorting. Students will learn to recognize and identify the common defects in wheat that are removed by each type of light source. The advantages and disadvantages of optical sorters will also be explained.
Lecturer: Shawn Thiele

Lecture 10 – Wheat Conditioning
The final lecture will provide a thorough analysis of wheat conditioning vs. wheat tempering. What are the benefits of wheat conditioning? What types of wheat conditioning optimizes those benefits? What are the requirements for wheat tempering? It will also discuss how to monitor and control moisture and explore temper bins and mass flow.
Lecturer: Shawn Thiele