Protect Your Investment! Tarp your hay

What is the financial benefit of tarping your hay stack?

Various University extension offices offer these figures for expected hay losses under various storage options.

Hay barn 5%

Stacked & tarped on rock pad 12%

Stacked & tarped on tires or pallets 14%

Plastic Sleeve 19%

Net wrap 23%

Outside Uncovered 30%

So let's assume for this exercise that your hay is worth $120 ton. We can put, on average, 50 tons of hay under a 52' tarp. The estimated value of this hay would be $6000 using $120/ton cost. If you stack this hay outside (uncovered) you can figure that you will lose approximately $1800 worth of your hay to the elements. Not only do you need to purchase more hay now but the existing hay that you have left is costing you $170 a ton! If you tarp the stack you will generally still have some loss from the bottom of the stack, at a 15% estimate you could potentially see losses of $900 bringing your hay costs to $140 ton. The tarp itself will run you between $200 and $350 depending on the width you need, netting you $900 per year over three years (approximate life of the tarp). I know that I would rather that $2700 was in my pocket and not the compost pile or laying in the field! I will also include a video from Inland Tarp with a tutorial to teach you a great way to tarp your hay easily.

Michelle Buker

Lakeland Feed & Supply

110 Mill Street

P.O. Box 298

Hamilton, MT. 59840

(406)363-2334 Hamilton Office

(406)683-5197 Dillon Office

(406)363-1156 Fax

Certified Crop Advisor #341649

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