Kevin Lee used to put waste plastic in dumpsters provided by a local landfill. Now Lee, who operates a 240-cow dairy farm near Magnolia, OH, recycles half of it. He’s participating in the Carroll County Farm Bureau recycling program.
“We have plastic coming from somewhere just about every day. We store haylage and silage in 10’ silo bags, have net-wrapped hay and heavy strings from 3 x 4 x 8’ bales of dry hay,” he points out.
Recycling, Lee hopes, “could save us money because we won’t need such a large dumpster. We just want to see how the program works out before we make any changes along those lines.”
Getting collection bags filled properly requires management, he says. “It’s not too bad with the bag that we use for net-wrap, bale strings and smaller material. With the bag we have for the larger pieces, like silo bags, we use a backhoe to pack the stuff. You have to take your time so the bag doesn’t rip. When it’s muddy, we’ll lay the used bags out and let them dry for a couple of days so we can shake the mud off easily. Then we fold them up before putting them into the (collection) bag.”
Transporting bags to the collection point isn’t as much of an issue as Lee originally thought it would be. “It’s only about eight miles away. We usually wait until we have a couple of bags loaded up. Then, when we’re going in that direction for something else, we’ll drop off the bags.”