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Chickpea Grading

Most Canadian chickpea production is sold to the Middle East, India, Pakistan and to South America. Currently, two types of chickpea are grown in Canada:

  • kabuli – larger types used for human consumption
  • desi – smaller types that are ground up into meal

An increase in the estimated production of chickpea and the need for quality assurance of the crop led to the need for a grade schedule for this commodity. Kabuli had been graded by using a “Bean” category, but this method is not suitable for desi varieties.

Grading Factors

  • Damaged: is whole or split chickpea that is sprouted, frost damaged, heated, insect damaged and chickpea that is distinctly deteriorated or discoloured by weather or disease.
  • Cracked seed coats: is chickpea with visibly cracked seed coats – if the chickpea is otherwise damaged, it is included in the tolerance for damage (not cracked seed coats).
    • Chickpea with all or part of the seed coat removed.
    • Broken chickpea with less than one fourth of the chickpea broken off is considered as damage.
  • Splits: include split chickpea, broken pieces that are less than three quarters of the whole seed and halves that are loosely held together by the seed coat.
  • Green: is chickpea that when cut in half, is a distinct green throughout. Pale green or immature seeds are taken into account in the evaluation of colour.
  • Foreign material: includes any material other than chickpea or split chickpea not removed in cleaning.
  • Colour
    • Good natural colour: chickpea that is sound, well matured and have a normal colour.
    • Fair colour: chickpea that is immature but not green, moderate amounts of adhered soil, lightly stained or otherwise moderately discoloured from natural causes.
    • Poor colour: chickpea that does not meet the definition of fair colour.