A silage wrap is a thin, plastic sheeting tied around the straw, stalks, and other feed material to keep the crop fresh until it is marketed. The main advantage of silage wrap is that it acts as an additional protection layer against the drying out of the plant material. It also acts as an insulator that prevents temperatures from skyrocketing during storage. Hay baling is another method of preventing excessive heat from damaging the plant material while it is stored. Hay baling is a critical component of the silage preparation process because if it isn’t properly done, the silage can become spoiled.
Hay Baling (also known as hay bale wrapping) is a common method for preparing silage wrap. Hay bales are rectangular, high UV protection bales manufactured with corrugated fibreglass inside to help prevent sunlight, snow, or hail from penetrating the material. The silage wrap’s square bales are also a perfect alternative to the standard one mil 30 cotton fibreglass hay bale because they’re completely inert and don’t pose any threat of E-waste or BPA contamination.
Unlike many silage preparation methods, direct deposit, also known as DFD, is a recycling system where the bales or squares of pre-manufactured, recyclable, agricultural plastic waste are deposited in a large vat of molten limestone on a cement sheet. Because the bales and squares of plastic are so lightweight, the pressure of the deposit causes them to rise to the top of the limestone vat, making it easy for them to be separated from one another. In this way, DFD is a good system for both preparing and recycling agricultural plastics.
Hay is a major component of most of the world’s silage preparation systems. Because silage provides excellent quantities of nitrogen and phosphorous, farmers prefer to spread it on their soil. Because it’s difficult to fertilise large areas of alfalfa hay, a silage wrap is used to create an open, permeable, highly perforated barrier. This allows the nutrients in the alfalfa or hay to be released slowly and over a long time, protecting the crops from early blight or disease. These benefits make silage wraps a superior strength product that supports a wide range of growing and environmental needs.
Alfalfa forage and rolls are good candidates for silage wrap because they’re small enough to be wrapped around with minimal layers of netting. Yet, they provide excellent quantities of phosphorous and nitrogen. Corn forage, which consists of several thousand square bales, is a large-scale agricultural feedstock that is difficult to recycle. Corn forage is especially difficult to recycle because of its large size and because corn forage is no longer harvested on an annual basis. Corn forage is also susceptible to the development of weed seeds that spread rapidly and destroy large amounts of the plant over time.
Corn silage and wheat silage are two examples of feeds that would benefit from using a silage wrap. In addition to providing high UV protection, the thick layers of soil that are characteristic of both types of feeds are more difficult to harvest. Harvesting large quantities of these types of feeds from a field would require more machinery, more labour, and more time. This increases the production cost of the system. A silage wrap could significantly reduce the harvesting time while also reducing the costs associated with the system’s operation.
A high-quality feed can be difficult to recycle because of its high nitrogen content. Much of the nitrogen stems from the heavy animal feed additives used to improve the taste and texture of commercial mixes. These compounds eventually make their way into the groundwater or surface water supply and add to the already elevated nitrogen levels in the environment. When this happens, farmers must rely on other sources to replenish their nitrogen sources.