May 5th - 2021

Economic benefit of using Silostop

Reduce waste, reduce plastic and increase ROI

This Spring the cost of feedstuffs, like most farm inputs has soared. Wheat, always a good indicator of the market, is back over the £200/tonne* mark so the importance of maximising your home-grown forage is more important than ever.

Silage making is not a cheap process. Each farm will have its own value on the production cost per tonne and generally it is between £30 - £40 in most countries.

Traditional Black PE films are relatively cheap, and the introduction of thinner cling films have certainly helped the reduction of spoiled silage by eliminating air pockets, however, the losses of DM (Dry Matter) are still very significant.

The net economic benefit of Silostop OB (Oxygen Barrier) film is £0.15 (US$ 0.20) to £2.00 (US$ 2.50) per tonne of crop fresh weight ensiled.

The net economic benefit of Silostop, or the return on investment, is:
- The value of silage saved by Silostop due to lower DM losses in the outer (top) layer of the bunker or pile.
- Plus, the labour saved in discarding spoiled inedible silage.
- Minus the additional cost of Silostop compared to conventional PE film.
- The Silostop benefit is based on research results showing that outer layer DM loss is reduced by up to 50% by using Silostop compared to conventional PE film.

The average net economic benefit of Silostop ranges from £0.15 (US$ 0.20) to £2.00 (US$ 2.50) per tonne and varies with:
- Silo type and capacity.
- Silage value.
- Costs of labour, conventional PE film and Silostop OB film.
- The return on investment applies to the entire tonnage of crop ensiled, not only the outer layer. Higher benefits are seen with smaller bunkers and drive-over piles because silage in the outer layer is a higher proportion of total silage mass than in larger silos.

This calculator shows an example based on value at £33/t in a standard size clamp of 20m x 50m. The return on investment comes out at 6.47:1 which is a great outcome for the farm for a simple change of product:

Market prices and trends - Farmers Weekly

Tim Brewer