Corn can be a great addition to your longer-term storage grains. In optimum conditions, corn will store as long as 30 years. Dry corn, like wheat, can be ground in a grinder to make corn meal or corn flour (both of which have very short shelf-lives and cannot be stored long term). There are specific grinders made just for corn, but these are unnecessary if you already have a good grinder. 4

There are three main kinds of corn suitable for long storage. All three kinds can be ground into flour or meal or popped for popcorn. However, Dent corn makes a better flour and Flint corn makes a better meal. Popcorn, which is the most widely available corn, has a higher moisture content (13 to 15%) to make it pop well.1 For optimum storage life, there should be less than 10% moisture in the corn at packing. So, it will probably not store as well as the other two varieties. All of these corns are available in different colors. The vitamin and nutrient content of the different colors vary some. Vitamin A, which can be in short supply in times of need, is more available from the yellow corn.1 Seed corn is not suitable for food storage because it is treated with a fungicide.6

It is possible to reconstitute dry corn. However, it does not typically work with commercially varieties of dried corn.3 If you dry your own Sweet corn you are more likely to have success. The shelf life, however, of your own dried, sweet corn is uncertain. The corn we grow in our gardens contains a fair amount of sugar and will spoil quickly. So, I wouldn't plan on drying and/or reconstituting sweet corn for long-term storage.

1 -
Selecting & Buying Grains (Alan T. Hagan)
2 -
Many Tracks
3 -
4 -
Harvest Essentials - Ktec
5 -
USA Emergency Supply
6 - University of Wisconsin Extention


Marie said...

This is great information--the only corn I had considered storing was popcorn, and haven't started yet, but it looks like that's not the best way to go for long-term storage. Do you have a good source for the Dent and Flint varieties, or have I just overlooked them in some really common location? Thanks in advance for more information!

Wendy said...

Marie -

Most food storage supplies sell both dent and flint corn. Both can be popped as popcorn if you sprinkle with water and let it sit and absorb the moisture. Popcorn can be additionally dried before storage to give a longer shelf life.

JOY said...

Thanks for this post - I purchased 50 lb. of popcorn. Now I know to llok for dent and flint. I have a food storage friday on my blog - it helps me to dedicate one day a week to it. THanks for helping me meet my goals!