IGP Returns to Original Name

As we plan for the future of the IGP Institute, we look ahead to what we are and what we want to accomplish.

Mark Fowler, IGP Institute associate director.

Mark Fowler, IGP Institute associate director.

IGP was established as the International Grains Institute in 1978, modeled after the Canadian International Grains Institute. As a result, some of our stakeholders felt that the names were conflicting. This led to the International Grains Institute becoming the International Grains Program.

When you think of an institute, you usually think of a multifaceted program that has a research component, an outreach component and an academic component. When we look at the direction our program is going, we believe we are by definition, an institute.

We look to re-brand ourselves and rename ourselves as the IGP Institute to reflect the three facets of our initiatives and our curricula. We have always had industry outreach and international outreach. That has been the foundation that we have built ourselves on. We’re working to further the mission of Kansas producers and producers from neighboring states by expanding the scope of what we offer.

Under the leadership of Dirk Maier, US-AID awarded Kansas State University the Post Harvest Loss Innovation Lab (PHL). The PHL, administered through the IGP Institute, is a strategic and applied research and education program aimed at providing global leadership in food security by reducing post-harvest loss and food waste of durable staple crops and their processed value-added products.

We continue to innovate and add value to our institution by combining our on-site courses and our distance education curriculum into a comprehensive training program. This gives our participants a breadth of knowledge for professional development that benefits the industry.

The credentialing program that we have established, although not for university credit, is an academic program that has been endorsed by the industry and represents a training curriculum that is rigorous and structured. We offer continuing education units or CEUs as part of those credentials. When we evaluate where we are as an institute, we meet the three requirements or the three expectations of an institute.

Our mission and purpose here at the IGP Institute has not changed. We want to deliver the best programming to promote the exportation and utilization of U.S. wheat, corn, soybeans and grain sorghum around the world.

 

GEAPS and K-State to Expand Educational Partnership, Offer Credential in Grain Processing Management

GEAPS and Kansas State University announced that they have agreed to expand their partnership in distance education to offer online courses and a Credential in Grain Processing Management. The current GEAPS/K-State program offers more than 20 online courses and credentials devoted mainly to grain-handling operations.

“We’re building on success,” said Mark Fedje, chairman of GEAPS International Board, and terminal elevator maintenance team leader, General Mills. “The expanded partnership will allow us to offer the grain-processing industry high-quality, focused and practical courses – the hallmark of our current program.”

Initially, Fedje said, the expanded program will combine current GEAPS/K-State operations online courses and K-State wheat-milling courses, leading to a Credential in Grain Processing Management. New processing courses, specialist credentials and a master’s credential will be added later.

“We’re confident that grain-processing and milling companies will find the courses and the credentials very useful,” said Dirk Maier, director of the GEAPS/K-State Distance Education Program. “They’ll help train new employees and improve the job skills of existing employees — even up to the veteran levels. They’ll also help build a career path for young people and help build qualifications at the entry level.” Maier is also director of K-State’s IGP Institute.

“GEAPS is pleased to be expanding our program with K-State. This will enhance support for the “P” or processing component of our membership, and the industry, by providing companies a resource for training current employees and supporting their career advancement,” Fedje explained.

Fedje and Maier agreed that expanding the partnership to offer processing courses allows them to more effectively leverage the resources and networks of both organizations to address global grain industry needs. Nearly 2,800 registrants from 30 nations have taken GEAPS/K-State online courses since the program began just eight years ago.

All required courses for the processing credential will provide the knowledge and training needed for successful operation of a flour mill or grain processing facility. Courses required focus on

  • Milling principles
  • Grain receiving, cleaning and conditioning
  • Grain quality management
  • Quality control/quality assurance in flour milling
  • Safety management for grain facilities
  • Materials handling

Current K-State and GEAPS/K-State courses for the remainder of 2014 will be offered on their already published schedules. Work is underway on the expanded dual track course schedule for 2015.

USDA Cochran Program Grain Purchasing Course

The IGP Institute hosted the USDA-Cochran Program Grain Purchasing course on July 7-15, 2014, with seven participants from Vietnam. The course covered topics including the U.S. grain production and marketing system, grain storage techniques and price risk management.

Ron Roth, Leonardville, Kan. farmer, explains the use of ammoniated silage for feed to the USDA-Cochran Grain Purchasing course participants as they toured his farm to observe seasonal crop production.

Ron Roth, Leonardville, Kan. farmer, explains the use of ammoniated silage for feed to the USDA-Cochran Grain Purchasing course participants as they toured his farm to observe seasonal crop production.

Jay O’Neil, IGP Institute senior agricultural economist, presented a majority of the presentations focusing on contracting, futures markets, and trading and hedging.

“The more our international customers know and understand about our U.S. export system, the more confident they will be in buying U.S. origin grains and oilseeds,” says O’Neil.

The course consisted of classroom work and trips to several leading agricultural venues including the USDA Federal Grain Inspection Service, DeLong container loading facility, a local farm, Kansas State University’s feed mill, Cargill Grain Elevator in Topeka, Kan., and Midwest Ag Services in Seneca, Kan.

The USDA-Cochran Grain Purchasing course participants observe grain grading practices while touring the USDA Federal Grain Inspection Service facilities in Kansas City, Mo.

The USDA-Cochran Grain Purchasing course participants observe grain grading practices while touring the USDA Federal Grain Inspection Service facilities in Kansas City, Mo.

A sales executive at Tan Long Trading Company, Manh Linh Truong, found the trips to be especially beneficial to him.

“Going to Cargill was great because we are planning to build a new feed mill in our company. Being able to see the Cargill facility answered a lot of my questions. Because of this opportunity, I was able to gain the knowledge needed before we can begin building,” Truong says.

With the constant market changes, it is important for industry professionals to be able to adapt and improve as the industry evolves, says O’Neil. One participant, Pham Tran Bich Hanh with Quangminh Corporation, felt that the course exceeded her initial expectations of understanding grain purchasing.

“I wanted to know more about futures in terms of corn and soybeans. Jay was good at that and was knowledgeable. He taught me a lot about how the market works,” Hanh says.

This is just one example of the many courses offered through the IGP Institute. In addition to grain marketing and risk management, the IGP Institute offers trainings in the areas of flour milling and grain processing, and feed manufacturing and grain management. To learn more about the opportunities with the IGP Institute visit http://www.grains.ksu.edu/igp. 

US Grains Council Mexico Grain Quality Workshop

Maintaining grain quality, understanding how USDA grain standards are implemented and, the U.S. export grain inspection system, as well as writing contracts in a way that secures the desired grain quality were the focuses of the USGC Mexico Grain Quality Workshop held at the IGP Institute on July 7-8, 2014, with a total of eight participants.

One participant, Roberto Salcedo, ruminant tech support at Nutrientes Basicos de Monterrey, was surprised at how practical the course was and how much the participants could apply the classroom situations to their jobs.

“The quality of the material that the instructors are giving us and the quality of the speakers are not only technical and knowledgeable, but they have practical experience,” Salcedo says. “It is an honor for me to be here.”

Senior Agricultural Economist, Jay O'Neil discusses grain quality with the USCG Mexico Grain Quality Workshop participants.

Senior Agricultural Economist, Jay O’Neil discusses grain quality with the USCG Mexico Grain Quality Workshop participants.

The course began by covering the basics of USDA grain standards and understanding why they are so important. The group then joined Carl Reed, grain storage specialist, for a hands-on lesson in grain grading practicum and inspection. The course then turned its focus on grain contracting terms and conditions.

Guadalupe Pamanes, manager of quality assurance and diagnostics at Grupo Crio chose this course specifically to gain a better understanding of quality grain.

“The biggest investment the company has is in buying grains. I’m very aware of the importance for cost and how much of an impact quality represents on the finished product,” Pamanes says.

This is one example of the trainings offered by the IGP Institute. In addition, faculty also lead courses in grain marketing and risk management, flour milling and grain processing, and feed manufacturing and grain management. To learn more about the IGP Institute, visit http://www.grains.ksu.edu/igp.

IGP Institute Expands Leadership Team

In response to the growing initiatives of the IGP Institute at Kansas State University, Brandi Miller has been recently named assistant director. In her expanded role, Miller will continue to support the IGP Institute program and take on additional leadership responsibilities.Brandi-Miller13

“Brandi has done an outstanding job since joining us in 2010. Through her leadership efforts, we have successfully grown and integrated our distance education program into the mission of the IGP Institute,” says Dirk Maier, IGP Institute director and department head of grain science and industry at Kansas State.

Along with her duties as assistant director, Miller will maintain her role as coordinator of on-line education and professional development, and associate director of the GEAPS/K-State distance education and credentialing program.

“Under Brandi’s leadership, our distance learning offerings in partnership with GEAPS have grown exponentially from five course offerings with 139 participants in 2008 to 18 offerings with 565 participants in 2013,” Maier says. Feed manufacturing distance courses have been added in collaboration with AFIA and flour milling offerings through the IGP Institute. Most distance and on-site courses are now available for CEUs and a professional credential is offered with GEAPS in grain operations management.

Miller is a 2004 graduate of Kansas State University holding a degree in bakery science and management. Upon her graduation she worked for Quaker Oats. She returned to the grain science and industry department at Kansas State University in January 2010 initially as the department’s distance education coordinator. She obtained her master’s degree in adult, occupational and continuing education in 2013 from Kansas State.

In looking to her new role Miller says, “I am delighted to have such an opportunity. The IGP Institute has had growth in several areas over the last few years and I look forward to continuing that trend for the future.”

The IGP Institute offers trainings in the areas of feed manufacturing and grain management, flour milling and grain processing, and grain marketing and risk management. To learn more about the educational opportunities offered through the IGP Institute visit http://www.grains.k-state.edu/igp. 

US Wheat Nigerian Flour Milling Group Observes Modern US Agricultural Practices

For most Kansans, the site of wheat harvest is just another sign of the summer season. However, for someone who has never been to the wheat state before, it is a whole new view.

On June 17, 2014, the IGP Institute welcomed 13 participants to the U.S. Wheat Nigerian Flour Milling course. As a major U.S. partner with the Nigerian milling industry, Kansas State University’s IGP Institute annually hosts the Nigerian Flour Milling course in conjunction with U.S. Wheat Associates.

Accompanying the group on the trip was Cathy Marais, an accountant for U.S. Wheat in Nigeria.

“This is the sixth year of the U.S. Wheat-sponsored IGP Institute milling course for the Nigerian milling industry. Not only does this course allow the millers to keep up with technology and new ideas, but also takes them back to grass roots,”Marais says.

group-photo-highway---cargill-(web)

USW Nigerian Flour Milling group outside of the Cargill Elevator in Salina, Kan.

Throughout the two-week course, participants shared their time between classroom presentations and hands-on laboratories. The instructors of this course were Mark Fowler, course manager and IGP Institute’s associate director, and Francis Churchill and Chris Miller, grain science and industry instructors.

“The Nigerian market is extremely important to hard red winter wheat producers. From bread to noodles, the market is very diverse and quality-oriented. In this two-week course, we led participants through the entire milling process from selecting the right class and quality of wheat, to producing the correct quality of flour for various wheat-based products,” Fowler says.

The participants not only learned the milling processes from on-site trainings at the Hal Ross Flour Mill, but they also traveled to several locations in Kansas to learn more about the entire milling operation. Beginning the trip in Salina, Kan., at the Cargill Grain Elevator, participants learned the economics of storing grain and the management practices that must be followed in the facility.

“It was interesting to see some of the different standards that Americans have and be able to apply the materials that we learned in the classroom to the actual situation,” says Charles Assoh, course participant.

The group also traveled to Newton, Kan. to tour Ardent Mills and later returned to Salina to observe a Kansas wheat harvest and new equipment technology in action at the Kejr family farm.

Course participant, Chukwudi Elechukwu, waves to the group after taking a ride in the combine.

Course participant, Chukwudi Elechukwu, waves to the group after taking a ride in the combine.

This is one example of the customized trainings offered by the IGP Institute. In addition to the flour milling and grain processing curricula, IGP faculty also lead courses in the grain marketing and risk management, and feed manufacturing and grain management. To learn more about IGP Institute, visit the website at http://www.grains.ksu.edu/igp. 

IGP Institute Hosts Basic and Advanced Milling Courses

When working in any aspect of the milling industry, it’s crucial to understand the fundamentals of the milling process. The IGP Institute strives to provide participants with quality resources and experiences.

The IGP-KSU Basic Milling Principles course took place June 3-6,2014 with seven participants, followed by the IGP-KSU Advanced Milling Principles course on June 10-13, 2014 with 11 participants. The first week focused on building a foundation of general understanding for all levels of milling expertise.

One participant, Andrew Garr, senior supply planter for Ardent Mills, took the course hoping to gain a better grasp of the entire milling process.

“I’m new to the flour industry,” says Garr,”I’ve only been working in it for a couple of years now and so without a milling background, I’m really just trying to get a better understanding of what is actually happening out there in the plant.”

Advanced Milling participants Asle Dismang (left) and Lim Wee Pin (right) work in the baking lab located in Shellenberger Hall on the K-State campus.

Advanced Milling participants Asle Dismang (left) and Lim Wee Pin (right) work in the baking lab located in Shellenberger Hall on the K-State campus.

While the basic course covered the essential portions of the milling process, the advanced course provided participants with a more in-depth experience in both the classroom and the mill. After the lecture portion of the course, the group was able to work through exercises involving purifiers, break releases and wheat labs.

“The advanced week provided participants with a better understanding of the milling process and trouble shooting skills,” says Mark Fowler, IGP Institute associate director and milling instructor. “We achieved this by an in-depth analysis of mill flow sheets and their design. We also went through a quantitative analysis of mill balance and production distributions.”

Partaking in both courses and traveling outside of his home country of Taiwan, Brian Suphananonta, assistant chairman at Chiao Thai Hsing Enterprise, completed these courses as part of the process of gaining milling credentials through the IGP Institute.

“I’ve been taking distance courses and getting my credential because they are very valuable to me. When you have credentials, people look up to it as a standard, especially the credential KSU offers because it is such a reputable university,” Suphananonta says.

This is one example of the courses offered by the IGP Institute. In addition to the flour milling and grain processing curriculum, IGP faculty also offers courses in grain marketing and risk management, and feed manufacturing and grain management. To learn more about IGP, visit the website at http://www.grains.ksu.edu/igp.