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Agriculture is a long-term practice that requires certain techniques known as agricultural practices. It starts with the preparation of the soil and the last stage is yield storage. Some major incidents also take place during these two processes. There's a threshing one among them.

In this article, we will study what is threshing, the difference between threshing and winnowing, threshing winnowing, threshing examples etc in detail.

What is Threshing?

Do You Know How We Can Explain Threshing?

Threshing is the method of separating grain from the stalk it grows on and from the chaff or unit that covers it. The edible portion of the crop is loosened in the process, but not the portion of the fibre. After harvesting and before winnowing, it is done. The method used in old times was to hit with a thrash on the harvested ears of grain and this was performed manually. Instead, goats, donkeys, or bulls squeezed the grain out of the stalks. After this, when the grains were winnowed to remove the debris, the straw was collected and raked away. The air current blew away the lightly weighted waste particles during winnowing, leaving only the hard grain particles.

Andrew Meikle invented the threshing machine later in the seventies. A spinning chamber furnished with wooden mixers was supported by piles of grain. To take away the free straw, the machine had a saw-tooth like a drum and forced the remaining waste and grain into a set of rollers through a strainer that further separated the chaff from the grain before winnowing. In all threshing machines, including the advanced self-moving combinations, the working theory of Meikle's machine was used. The harvesting, threshing, and winnowing are performed by combined harvesters.

In an isolated plot of land called the threshing floor, threshing was normally performed. Some threshing floors were flattened (outdoor) circular or paved surfaces, but the floor used to be a stone or a wooden plank, typically in small-scale farming. Outdoor floors were used by an entire village as a shared land. But, sadly, new devices and technology have outsourced flooring.

Difference Between Threshing and Winnowing



It is a process of beating out grains from stems.

It is a process of separating the grains from the chaff.

It is done by striking harvested crops against a hard surface.

It is with the help of wind separation of grain alone

It is done manually through a machine called thresher or draught animals

This process is carried out by a winnowing machine.

It is done before winnowing 

It is done after threshing immediately.

Threshing Winnowing

The most important kernel harvester function is threshing. Grain loss and the degradation of the crop contribute significantly to the threshing philosophy and techniques. There are four types of principles of threshing available: scratching, scraping, combing, and grinding. 

Grain loss can be considered a peripheral velocity function and affects the pattern of contact. A characteristic of rasp bar contact patterns can be recognized as grain loss. In the subsequent combing threshing process, grain loss resulting from cleaning and separation was significantly decreased.

Winnowing is the name given to the process of separating the grain from the chaff. This is the move that accompanies threshing (the method of loosening the chaff). As the grain is often thicker than the chaff, the gentle wind is normally enough to blow the chaff away, while the grain is left in place. Winnowing often involves ventilation.

Threshing Examples

  • By handpicking, pebbles, broken grains, and insects from rice, wheat, and pulses.

  • For the separation of seeds from the harvested stalks, threshing is used.

Did You Know?

Hand Threshing:

In the case of pigeon pea, hand threshing is normally performed. One of the easiest systems for pigeon pea crop threshing is to hit a flail or a stick at the sheaves of crop scattered over the threshing floor. Although this technique can be adopted for other pulse crops such as chickpea, mungbean, field pea, and lentil, threshing with animals or vehicles is a more convenient process. A hard, clean surface must be in the threshing-floors on which the sheaves are spread. A worker can gain 15-40 kg of product per hour by using the hand-threshing process.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

Question: What is the Use of Threshing Techniques?

Answer: Threshing is the mechanism by which the edible portion of the grain (or another crop) is loosened from the straw it is attached to. It is a step in the preparation of grain after harvesting. The bran does not get separated from the grain by threshing. Using a flail on a threshing floor, threshing can be achieved by beating the grain.

Question: What are the Benefits of Threshing Machinery?

Answer: The advantages of the thresher include less physical labour and greater productivity (amount of grain thresher per amount of time). As compared to stomping or beating seeds, less seed breakage is also an advantage of using a thresher. There could be further breakage, however, it is not used properly.

Question: Why is Threshing Done Before Winnowing?

Answer: Threshing is the grain separation process from the stalk on which it grows and from the chaff or device covering it. The edible portion of the crop is loosened in the process, but not the portion of the fibre. After harvesting and before winnowing, it is finished.