Forages stored in bales instead of bunkers are higher in quality, and spoilage losses are much lower, says Lane Blount of Humdinger Equipment,Lubbock, TX.

He’s banking on those advantages to help sell a machine that packages chopped corn and other bulky materials in plastic-wrapped round bales. His company recently became the North American distributor of the Norwegian-made Orkel MP 2000 Compactor, a heavy-duty, trailer-mounted machine that operates as a stationary unit. Loader buckets of material are dropped into a large tub on one end, and tightly wrapped bales come out the other.

“It really does a wonderful job on corn silage,” says Blount.

Several European studies have shown a quality advantage for baled silage, he says. In one trial, dairy cows fed a 50% corn silage, 50% concentrate ration produced 17 lbs/cow/day more milk on baled vs. bunker-stored silage.

Some potential buyers wonder if the baler can keep pace with a self-propelled chopper. Blount tells them that it can turn out 45 bales per hour.

“It’ll get up and go as far as bales go, as long as you’re feeding it nice and evenly,” he says. “It can actually be producing a bale while it’s wrapping another bale. We put it in a demonstration baling cottonseed and cottonseed hulls and were able to get 1,280 lbs in a bale every 90 seconds.”

Compost and wood shavings are among the other materials that could be baled, he adds. In Europe, where this and other compactor brands have been sold for several years, various waste products are baled, shipped long distances and turned into fuel.

The MP 2000 makes 4 x 4’ bales that weigh 1,500-2,200 lbs, depending on the material baled. Two smaller models – MC 850 and MC 1000 – make 3 x 4’ and 3.5 x 4’ bales, respectively. Prices for the three models range from $240,000 to $350,000. Blount says buyers can custom bale or bale several types of material to reduce the cost per bale.

He plans to demonstrate an MP 2000 Compactor on a Texas Panhandle dairy, baling corn silage.

“We want to watch this thing work and see how fast we can make it work,” he says. “That’s going to be our next step.”

For details, contact Blount at 832-594-2818 or lane@tana-na.com.