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So we put up our first field of high moisture silage bales this year and the process was quite enjoyable. We have previously purchased baleage and have found it to be excellent feed. As I was wrapping I got to thinking though, if the economics balance out to wrap all our bales, dry or not, and wanted some opinions.

Thoughts (I am in Canada btw for pricing):
Based of DM loss and quality deterioration of dry hay stored outside seems to me there may be a case to wrap all hay including dry.
Font Material property Number Screenshot Parallel

Source: Big Bale Storage Losses; how different options stack up

Based on the above table (using uncovered on ground netwrap), if we say there is a 6-25% loss of DM we could average that to lets say 12% which seems to be a common number.
12% of a 1500lb 14% moisture bale equates to 154.8lbs of loss DM per bale, at a rate of .05/LB its an estimated loss of $7.74

if we wrapped that same bale (Plastic wrap on ground):
6% DM loss on a 1500lb 14% moisture bale equates to 77.4lbs of Loss, at a rate of .05/lb is an estimated loss of $3.87

Now those numbers don't exactly jive to make it worthwhile at $8/bale to wrap plus tractor and time, but my gut tells me that its a bit of a sliding scale. For instance if someone was to have bales left over from year one to year two. Losses would be expected to greatly exceed the 12%, where as the losses on the wrapped stuff from my experience seem to have a negligible increase.

Freedom from moisture concerns during the hay season is also a big factor as well, being able to reduce concerns for higher moisture hay, 20-30% and still bale it and wrap it all reducing downtime, and potential in field quality losses due to rain and weather factors. I think this in itself has a major economic value.

Looking at it from that perspective is there a case to wrap every bale? or am I way off in left field.

We put up around 300-400 bales, so wrap isn't cheap. But If I could go from 200 good quality fall bales and 200 kinda nasty spring bales to all bales being fresh all the time. Might be worth the time and effort.
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