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  • Writer's pictureEva Gulbranson

Prevent Your Barn Full Of Hay From Heating Up

Green hay in a Hay Dryer

All around the world, hay producers crowd the line and cross over sometimes baling at too high of moisture for one reason or another. In 2018, that is what happened to a hay producer east of Lethbridge, Alberta.

The familiar story for all hay producers had happened. The hay was laying down in swathes in the field and the forecast showed that rain was coming.

To bale or not to bale,…. always the question.

As we have all done at one time or another, they crossed their fingers and went ahead and baled it up before the rains hit hoping to save the hay from the rain and trusting the moisture was low enough so it would keep.

It didn’t.

They monitored them very closely and in a few days the temperature in those large square bales started to climb.

At Agri Green, we had just completed another AG Maximizer Hay Dryer (one of the original models) and were on our way to deliver it to our customer in Alberta. The purchaser asked us to deliver to the location of the barn of heating hay to give them a hand and dry down their hay.

Upon arrival, we were happy to see another AG Maximizer Hay Dryer already in operation drying down bales. Within 24 hours the 868 bales were all run through the dryers and put back in the barn,… BUT, the story doesn’t end there.

Two hay dryers being loaded with alfalfa hay

We have learned that when hay is baled at a higher moisture, the leaf retention is significantly increased and the stems are much softer, even after drying and has a bright green colour.

This crop had hung on the balance of heating, turning brown or achieving the quality standard that all farmers shoot for.

While the AG Maximizer Hay Dryers did save the hay crop, it gets even better. It was elevated to the status of Supreme (Pet Food Quality) quality and the crops value jumped by $200/ton.

That is what the AG Maximize Hay Dryer does; it adds value. A comment that day was “your dryer sure makes high quality hay!”

The fact of the matter was, it wasn’t the dryer that made the high quality hay. It was by baling a day earlier than it should have been for sun cured hay to keep, and then running it through the dryer to bring the moisture down to preserve it.

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