Northwest Crops and Soils Program : University of Vermont

University of Vermont

Cereal Grain Testing Lab


The UVM Cereal Grain Testing Laboratory is for commercial grain and hop analysis. If you have samples you would like analyzed, please send in payment along with a completed submission form — these must accompany all requests sent in. In order to get results that accurately reflect your product, be sure to employ good sampling techniques. Remember the results are only as good as the sample submitted!

For Grains

We test for test weight, moisture, protein, falling number, and DON in grains. We also conduct analyses for corn (% Moisture, % Crude Protein, % Crude Fiber, and % Starch).

Click here for the Cereal Submission Form. Payment and a completed Submission Form must accompany all requests please. To expedite analysis of your sample(s), please provide a completed submission form(s) and payment with your sample(s). Also please make sure you provide 1 quart of clean (no stones and dirt) and dry (<14% moisture) whole grain for each sample submitted.


For Hops

Hops Quality Analysis is now available at the UVM Lab as well. We can test for Brewing Values (BV’s) which determines Alpha acids, Beta acids and Hops Storage Index (HSI).
Click here for the Hops Analysis Submission Form. Payment and a completed Submission Form must accompany all requests please.  Please see our What’s Hoppening blog post for tips on submitting hop samples for quality analysis.

About the Laboratory

The Cereal Grain Quality Testing Laboratory is run by the University of Vermont Northwest Crops and Soils Program led by Dr. Heather Darby. The lab opened in 2011 thanks to funding from the Castanea Foundation and the support from generous private donations. During the testing season, we accept grain samples from farmers throughout the region.

The lab is equipped with near-infrared technology for protein analysis and employs a method to test for deoxynivalenol (DON) also known as vomitoxin. Occurrences of this vomitoxin in wheat at or above 1 ppm are considered unsafe for human consumption by the FDA. Contamination of wheat with DON is directly related to the incidence of Fusarium head blight and strongly associated with relative moisture and timing of rainfall at flowering.

Our lab also houses a sophisticated machine to test the Falling Number of wheat, an internationally standardized method for sprout damage detection. The Falling Number System measures the alpha-amylase enzyme activity in grains and flour to detect sprout damage, optimize flour enzyme activity and guarantee soundness of traded grain. Alpha-amylase activity is crucial for final product quality of bread, pasta, noodles and malt.


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