Switch to 60% less plastic for more silage, better silage
Silostop explains the modern way of covering silage that reduces plastic usage by 60%, reduces Dry Matter loss, increases aerobic stability, and makes your farm more sustainable.
It is generally accepted that reducing plastic usage on farms is a great goal. One area often overlooked is the silo; newer Oxygen Barrier Films can reduce traditional plastic usage by over 60% while generating more and better silage.
Traditionally a producer uses one 120-micron black plastic sheet over top a 40- micron underlay film. Both are single-use plastics, making a minimum of 160 micron of plastic used annually. When calculating that thickness over the average bunker size of 12m by 20m, one gets a sense of the monumental amount of plastic disposed of each year. On top of the double layer system, covers and tyres have been used to keep the plastic safe from physical damage.
Not only does the double layer system use more plastic; it also entails more labour. And the worst part is that often, farmers will still have to toss inches of spoilage before feeding their silage out.
There is a better way. In the last decade, true Oxygen Barrier Films were developed. Using only one 45-micron plastic sheet and a composition which prevents oxygen ingress, these films keep oxygen out of the silage. They maintain the forage in much better condition than the traditional cling film and black sheet combination, whilst also decreasing dry matter losses and spoilage. This technology reduces total plastic usage by 60% annually.
Silostop Oxygen Barrier Films have been trialed and tested worldwide with impressive results when compared to the traditional films. “Switching from two layers of film at 160 microns, plus a cover and tyres, to one layer of 45-micron Oxygen Barrier Film and reusable Anti-UV Covers and Gravel bags has great results,” says Rob Gaze, technical manager, Silostop. “Not only is plastic usage reduced by 60%, but incidents of wires disease drop down to nil, forage nutrients are improved, and spoilage on the top one metre and shoulders is almost non-existent. There will even be savings on the recycling levy, as only one thin sheet needs recycling.”Silostop was the first company to develop Oxygen Barrier technology for agriculture. We worked alongside farmers and experts in the silage sector over a decade ago and have since continue to innovate and expand worldwide. We are committed to reducing plastic usage in the ensiling process and making our products as sustainable as possible. All Silostop products are fully recyclable.