ADVANTAGES OF NET WRAP
Here we introduce some advantages of net warp include faster baling, lower baling losses, better bale integrity during handling and transport, better water shedding ability and lower outdoor storage losses.
Only 1¼ to 2½ turns of the bale are required to wrap a bale with net wrap, compared to 20 to 30 turns with twine. According to the WI research, a baler set up to net wrap can bale 32% more bales per hour than one using twine. This speeds up the baling process, allowing more to get done when the weather is good. It also saves fuel and labour. This significantly greater productivity is the main advantage of net wrap balers, particularly for farmers with large acreages and custom operators who can pass on the higher costs to their customers.
Reduced Baling Losses
Because you are spinning the bale in the chamber significantly fewer times while wrapping with net wrap rather than with twine, there is significantly less leaf loss dropping out of the baler. In the WI research, wrapping losses were 1.0% of dry matter with net wrap and 2.9% with twine.
Reduced Outdoor Storage Losses
Outdoor hay storage results in a great deal of spoilage. Storing hay inside is recommended to avoid costly spoilage, but not always possible. Tarps can help, but can be challenging to maintain. The reality is that there are sometimes lots of bales stored outside uncovered. “Water shedding ability” for storing bales outside is frequently cited as a perceived advantage of net wrap, but is this real?
In the WI trials measuring moisture levels in the “outside rind” of the bales, net wrapped alfalfa bales did shed rainfall better than twined wrapped bales and were lower moisture. Finer stemmed grasses seemed to form a better thatch. However, some of the advantage of improved water shedding ability is lost if bales are not stored on a well drained surface (crushed rock, pallets, etc). Otherwise, rainwater will run off the bales and accumulate at the bottom. When bales sit directly on the ground, they act like a sponge and absorb moisture, and significant spoilage occurs at the bottom of the bales.