Field corn versus table corn

Farmallh

Farm Hand
Messages
59
What is the difference between field corn and corn that is for people? I know field corn is tough to eat but is there any reason you can't eat it?

Why do farmers leave the corn up for so long? It's dead looking before they cut it down?
 

Charli1

Farm Hand
Messages
70
I use the field corn to feed the cows. We wait until it gets really dry and then mulch it up for feed.
Field corn is tough and has very little flavor. I wouldn't eat it.
 

leon

Farm Hand
Messages
51
Corn that directly comes from the field is hard and not sweet. Field corn goes through a mill and gets converted to food products and other ingredients. The farmers leave the corn in the fields until the kernels are dry because it is easier to process that way.
 

jjp8182

Farm Hand
Messages
52
Actually both can/are consumed by people. Field/dent corn is left to dry for ease of processing/harvesting and is usually used for animal feed (or other uses) as well as grinding into corn meal or corn flour for use as food in that manner.

The sweet corns (the type that's preferable for eating as corn on the cob, and other whole kernel food uses) is a lot sweeter tasting due to the higher sugar content in the kernels, and is harvested by the ear without letting it dry in the field.

There are also other types of corn that are specialized off shoots such as the popcorns, and other specialty corns (think white, and indian/flint corns) ..... all of which are specialized breeds/varieties descended from maize.

So yes field corn can and is eaten by people -- however, I'd not recommend doing so outside of grinding it down for corn flour or corn meal due to the really bland taste --- and definitely not without soaking it into a mush given the hard texture of the dried kernels. (I've tasted dried kernels of harvested field corn before, and it's not high on my list of things to have ever again).
 

leon

Farm Hand
Messages
51
Ooh yes, some people or farmers pick ears of field corn and eat it raw or cook it on the cob, when its sugar content has peaked. I would never try anything like this ever! I have also heard that field corn can hurt your teeth?
 

Chris T

Farm Hand
Messages
30
What an informative thread; I even had no idea that field corn could hurt the teeth. It is much more convenient to go for table corn because there is so much involved in making the field corn edible.
 

jjp8182

Farm Hand
Messages
52
Ooh yes, some people or farmers pick ears of field corn and eat it raw or cook it on the cob, when its sugar content has peaked. I would never try anything like this ever! I have also heard that field corn can hurt your teeth?
I could see how it would be painful or possibly even cause problems after it's been dried since it hardens quite a bit as it dries out - the fact that when it's dried it can be ground into a powder/flour (rather than mush) should give an idea of how hard/dried it can become. However, I'm not aware of any problems (other than taste) when it's still moist, but I'd also rather not eat enough field corn to find out...
 
 
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