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Store category 

Store type 

Typical ranges   

Construction and manufacture    

15 store materials and constructionICON

Extent of adoption

20 AdoptionICON 

Storage period**

Store capacity (tonnes)


Metal drums


3 - 24 months   

90 - 180kg

Constructed from metal sheet, manufactured in Asia but can be made locally if simple equipment purchased.

Popular in some locations but not very widespread

Plastic drum/silo


50kg - 4t

Constructed from plastic, often by local water tank manufacturers

Popular in some locations but not very widespread

Grain bags

2.Hermeticdouble layerbag

50 - 120kg

Plastic of various qualities.  Made by serveral companies, some within Africa.

Some types increasingly widespread, others only just entering market



1 - 300t

Plastic, made by GrainPro in The Phillippines

Used mostly by projects supporting farmer groups


Metal silos


3 - 24 months

90kg - 3t>

 Constructed from metal sheet, manufactured by local artisans

Strong adoption in Central America, to date modest in Africa

Metal tanks


3 - 12 months

200kg – 2t

 Constructed from corrugated metal sheet by water tank manufactures

Strong adoption In Swaziland, less so elsewhere

Open weave  

Polypropylene sacks

 5 PP bagICON

0 - 6 months 


 Constructed from polypropylene strands, manufactured within and outside Africa

Very strong adoption Africa-wide

Jute sack



Constructed from jute strands, manufactured mostly in Bangladesh

Quite commonly found but now less so than polyproylene

Insecticide treated polypropylene sack


3 - 12 months


Constructed from polypropylene with deltamethrin incorporated,  manufactured in Vietnam

Limited, only just entering market

Improved traditional  

Zimbabwe granary


0 - 6 months  


Brick pillars, wire-mesh reinforced concrete slab, brick wall, thatch grass roof, all of local construction

No known

Tanzanian kihenge


1 - 5t

Wickerwork basket of bamboo or other sticks plastered with cowdung and ash, thatch roof added, all of local construction

Not known

Gorongosa mud silos


0.5 - 1.6t

Iron rods, mud bricks, a cement base and cover, all under thatch shelter.  Made by trained artisans.

Commonly quite adopted in some parts of Mozambique

* If store not filled then the excess air may prevent the creation of a modified atmosphere.

** Storage periods for well dried cereals and pulses (≤ 14% moisture content)