10 Difference Between Sorghum And Millet (With Pictures)

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What Is Sorghum?

Sorghum is an ancient cereal grown for human consumption and pasture for animals. It is the fifth major staple cereal after wheat, rice, maize and barley. It is cultivated worldwide in warmer climates and is an important food crop in semi-arid tropical areas of Africa, Asia and Central America. Sorghum grain is a small, hard caryopsis covered by glumes. In animal nutrition, grain sorghum is generally used as an energy source and is a good feedstuff for poultry, pigs and ruminants.

Varieties/Types of Sorghum

  • White sorghum
  • Waxy burgundy sorghum
  • Sumac sorghum
  • Black sorghum
  • Waxy white sorghum

What You Need To Know About Sorghum

  • The genus Sorghum contains 25 different species more than half of which are native to Australia, with other species originating in Africa and Asia.
  • There are many varieties of Sorghum; however Sorghum bicolor variety is the most common variety that is grown worldwide for food and animal fodder.
  • Sorghum is the fifth major staple cereal after wheat, rice, maize and barley.
  • Sorghum bicolor can grow up to 15 feet tall on hearty stalks and produces spikelets of white, yellow, red or brown grain seeds.
  • Stalks and leaves of Sorghum are coated with a white wax and the pith or central portion, of the stalks of certain varieties is juicy and sweet.
  • The leaves are about 5 cm (2 inches) broad and 76 (2.5 feet) long.
  • The tiny flowers are produced in panicles that range from loose to dense; each flower cluster bears 800-3000 kernels.
  • The seeds vary widely among different types in color, shape and size but they are smaller than those of wheat.
  • Sorghum is generally a drought tolerant crop and often grown in drier areas.
  • It is grown for biofuel, animal fodder and forage and in some places its stalks and fibers are used for building materials, brooms and brushes.
  • For human consumption, gluten is usually ground into a meal that is made into porridge, flatbreads and cakes.
  • Sorghum can be used as a cover crop during the fall and winter.
  • Sorghum is adapted to a wide array of environments, grown in the tropics as well as in arid regions of the world.
  • Sorghum matures quickly, some types in as little as 75 days and can provide up to three harvests a year.
  • Sorghum has high antioxidant levels compared to other grains and vegetables and contains an impressive mix of phytochemicals.
  • Types of sorghum include: White sorghum, Waxy burgundy sorghum, Sumac sorghum, Black sorghum and Waxy white sorghum.
  • Sorghum is also used in making edible oil, starch, dextrose (a sugar), paste and alcoholic beverages.

What Is Millet?

 Millet is a group of small-seeded grasses, which is cultivated throughout the world as cereal crops or grains for human food and as fodder. Millet is one of the oldest cultivated grain in the world and has been grown throughout Africa and Southeast Asia for thousands of years. Millet can be used to make bread, bear and other dishes. Even as of today, millet is a staple food around the world. Millet is gluten-free and is high in protein and antioxidants and have a low glycemic index, which can help prevent or manage diabetes.

Varieties/Types of millet

  • Finger Millet
  •  Foxtail Millet
  • Pearl Millet
  • Buckwheat Millet
  •  Amaranth Millet
  • Little Millet
  • Barnyard Millet
  • Broomcorm Millet
  • Kodo Millet

What You Need To know About Millet

  • Millet is a group of small-seeded grasses, which is cultivated throughout the world as cereal crops or grains for human food and as fodder.
  • Millets are typically annuals and range in heights from 30 to 130 cm (1 to 4 feet), with the exception of pearl millet, which has stalks 1.5 to 3 metres (5 to 10 feet) tall and about 2.5 cm (1 inch) thick.
  • The inflorescence may be spikes or racemes, in which the flowers are borne on stalks of about equal length along an elongated axis or panicles with dense clusters of small florets.
  • With exception of pearl millet, seeds remain enclosed in hulls after threshing. Hulled seeds are usually creamy white.
  • Although there are different varieties of millet grown around the world, the most common cultivar is Pennisetum glaucum also referred to as pearl millet.
  • Millet is mainly grown in developing countries such as India, Philippines, China and Nigeria etc.
  • Millet is highly versatile crop with ability to grow in relatively harsh, arid and dry environment.
  • Millet is a good source of carbohydrates and fiber, like other grains. It is also good source of nutrients, vitamins, minerals and organic compounds.
  • Millet is gluten-free and is high in protein and antioxidants and have a low glycemic index, which can help prevent or manage diabetes.
  • Millets are multi-purpose- their stalks can be used not only as grains for human consumption, but also as animal fodder, as a biofuel and in brewing.
  • Millet is somehow strong in taste and is mainly consumed in flatbreads and porridges or prepared and eaten much like rice.
  • Types of millet include: Finger millet, Foxtail Millet, Pearl Millet, Buckwheat Millet, Amaranth Millet, Little Millet, Barnyard Millet, Broomcorm Millet and Kodo Millet.

Also Read: Differences Between Rabi and Kharif Crops

Difference Between Sorghum And Millet In Tabular Form

BASIS OF COMPARISON SORGHUM MILLET
Description Sorghum is an ancient cereal grown for human consumption and pasture for animals. Millet is a group of small-seeded grasses, which is cultivated throughout the world as cereal crops or grains for human food and as fodder.
Family It is a species of flowering plant in the grass family Poaceae. It is a species of plant in the grass family Poaceae.
Size Sorghum bicolor can grow up to 15 feet tall on hearty stalks with leaves of about 5 cm (2 inches) broad and 76 (2.5 feet) long.   Millets are typically annuals and range in heights from 30 to 130 cm (1 to 4 feet), with the exception of pearl millet, which has stalks 1.5 to 3 metres (5 to 10 feet) tall and about 2.5 cm (1 nch) thick.
Commonly Cultivated Variety Sorghum bicolor variety is the most common variety that is grown worldwide for food and animal fodder.   The most common cultivar is Pennisetum glaucum also referred to as pearl millet.  
Types White sorghum, Waxy burgundy sorghum, Sumac sorghum, Black sorghum and Waxy white sorghum.   Finger millet, Foxtail Millet, Pearl Millet, Buckwheat Millet, Amaranth Millet, Little Millet, Barnyard Millet, Broomcorm Millet and Kodo Millet.
Consumption Sorghum is usually ground into a meal that is made into porridge, flatbreads and cakes.   Mainly consumed in flatbreads and porridges or prepared and eaten much like rice.  
Uses Other than food, Sorghum is also used in making edible oil, starch, dextrose (a sugar), paste and alcoholic beverages.   It used not only as grains for human consumption, but also as animal fodder, as a biofuel and in brewing.