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Queensland Government Standard Imperial Bushel. Queensland Museum
|Unit system||imperial and US customary|
|Symbol||bsh or bu|
|Unit conversions (imperial)|
|1 imp bsh in ...||... is equal to ...|
|imperial units||8 gal|
|metric units||36.36872 l|
|US dry units||8.2565 gal|
|imperial/US units||2219.36 cu in|
|Unit conversions (US)|
|1 US bsh in ...||... is equal to ...|
|US dry units||8 gal|
|metric units||35.2391 l|
|imperial units||7.7515 gal|
|imperial/US units||2150.42 cu in|
A bushel is an imperial and US customary unit of dry volume, equivalent in each of these systems to 4 pecks or 8 gallons. It is used for volumes of dry commodities (not liquids), most often in agriculture. It is abbreviated as bsh. or bu. In modern usage, the dry volume is usually only nominal, with bushels referring to standard weights instead.
|1 imperial bushel||= 8 imperial gallons|
|= 4 imperial pecks|
|= 36.36872 litres|
|≈ 8.2565 US dry gallons|
|≈ 9.6076 US fluid gallons|
|≈ 2219.36 cubic inches|
|1 US bushel||= 8 US dry gallons|
|= 4 US pecks|
|= 2150.42 cubic inches|
|≈ 9.3092 US fluid gallons|
|≈ 35.2391 litres|
|≈ 7.7515 imperial gallons|
Use as unit of weight
Bushels are now most often used as units of mass or weight rather than of volume. The bushels in which grains are bought and sold on commodity markets or at local grain elevators, and for reports of grain production, are all units of weight. This is done by assigning a standard weight to each commodity that is to be measured in bushels. These bushels depend on the commodities being measured and the moisture content. Some of the more common ones are:
- Barley: 48 lb = 21.7724 kg
- Malted barley: 34 lb = 15.4221 kg
- Shelled maize (corn) at 15.5% moisture by weight: 56 lb = 25.4012 kg
- Wheat at 13.5% moisture by weight and soybeans at 13% moisture by weight: 60 lb = 27.2155 kg
Other specific values are defined (and those definitions may vary within different jurisdictions, including from state to state in the United States) for other grains, oilseeds, fruits, vegetables, coal, hair and many other commodities.
Government policy in the United States is to phase out units such as the bushel and replace them with metric mass equivalents.
The bushel was originally a measure of capacity for grain. During the Middle Ages, the bushel of wheat was supposed to weigh 64 tower pounds, but when the tower system was abolished in the 16th century, it was described as 56 avoirdupois pounds. The bushel was rarely used in Scotland, Ireland or Wales during the Middle Ages.
The US bushel is based on Winchester measure in which a bushel was originally defined as the volume of a cylinder 18.5 in (46.99 cm) in diameter and 8 in (20.32 cm) high, giving an irrational number of cubic inches. Later this bushel was redefined as 2150.42 cubic inches, about one part per ten million less.
- "Bushel". Oxford English Dictionary (Second ed.). Oxford, England. 1989.
- William J. Murphy. "Tables for Weights and Measurement: Crops". University of Missouri Extension. Retrieved 18 December 2008.
- Marketing Oats in Canada http://www1.agric.gov.ab.ca/$department/deptdocs.nsf/all/sis10952