A new type of mechanical conditioner soon will be on the market. Profab, a Manitoba company, will begin limited production of a macerator this summer. It will be a version of a machine developed by engineers at the Prairie Agricultural Machinery Institute (PAMI), located in the same Canadian province.

The machine moves alfalfa through two sets of rollers: a rubber set and a serrated steel set. The steel rollers run at different speeds, creating a shredding action.

The first macerator was invented many years ago at the University of Wisconsin. Several others have been built, but none have been marketed in North America.

Claims have ranged from half the drying time of conventional conditioners to same-day cutting and baling. The Profab macerator will be distributed in the U.S. For more information, call 204-364-2211 or 888-933-4440.