Maize
     

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Information @ a Glance

General

  • Maize known as corn in some countries, is a cereal grain domesticated in Mesoamerica and subsequently spread throughout the American continents.
  • Hybrid maize, due to its high grain yield as a result of heterosis , is preferred by farmers over conventional varieties.
  • The term maize derives from the Spanish form of the indigenous Taino term for the plant, and is the form most commonly heard in the United Kingdom
  • Maize has a very distinct growth form; the lower leaves being like broad flags, 50100 centimetres long and 510 centimetres wide (24 ft by 24 in); the stems are erect, conventionally 23 metres (710 ft) in height, with many nodes, casting off flag-leaves at every node.

Cultivation

  • Maize is widely cultivated throughout the world, and a greater weight of maize is produced each year than any other grain.
  • The cultivation of Maize in Germany is undertaken primarily to produce feed for cows, pigs and poultry (maize for silage including green-maize, grain maize, corn cob mix, maize coarse meal with husks).
  • The dominant areas of cultivation are on the intensive livestock farms of Lower Saxony  and North Rhine-Westphalia  mainly on farms with livestock which have a supply of manure.

Uses

  • The primary use for maize is as a feed for livestock, forage, silage or grain.
  • The grain also has many industrial uses, including transformation into plastics and fabrics. Some is hydrolyzed and enzymatically treated to produce syrups, particularly high fructose corn syrup, a sweetener, and some is fermented and distilled to produce grain alcohol.
  • The floury meal of maize (cornmeal or masa) is used to make cornbread and Mexican tortillas. Teosinte is used as fodder, and can also be popped as popcorn.
  • Certain varieties of maize have been bred to produce many additional developed ears, and these are the source of the "baby corn" that is used as a vegetable in Asian cuisine.
Market
  • Large scale farming of gene-modified (GM) maize in countries like the US, Brazil, Argentina etc. has contributed significantly to overproduction and hence oversupply in world maize market.
  • The U.S. is the leader in world maize market.
  • US maize exports to the EU dropped about $200 million per year, on average, primarily because of declining exports to Spain and Portugal resulting from a moratorium on EU approval of new maize varieties already being grown in the US. Export of Maize, sorghum and millet is freely allowed subject to registration cum allocation certificate issued by Agricultural and Processed Foods Export Development Authority

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