Calcium Products - Net Wrap or Twine
Calcium Product 98G

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Net Wrap or Twine

In many situations in agriculture you have choices, you can choose SuperCal 98G or ag lime for your lime source. When it comes to baling you can use net wrap or twine.

When you first look at net wrap, the price per roll is much more expensive ($240 per roll) than twine ($35 per roll). Net wrap is 6.8 times more expensive! However if you only considering the price you are missing a big pieces of the pie. One needs to consider the other costs involved.

In an article on Progressive Forgages, Dr. Kevin Schinners, an agricultural engineer at the University of Wisconsin has compared net wrap to baler twine and has found that wrap has some advantages. These include faster baling, lower baling losses, better bale integrity during handling and transport, better water-shedding ability and lower outdoor storage losses. Let's put a dollar figure to those advantages, using $120 per ton for alfalfa bales.

According to the Wisconsin research, a baler set up to net wrap can bale 32 percent more bales per hour than one using twine. $120 * 0.32 = $38.40

Wrapping losses were 1 percent of dry matter with net wrap and 2.9 percent with twine. 2.9-1=1.9*$120 = $2.28

Average total dry matter losses for bales stored outside on the ground were 11.3 percent for plastic twine wrapped bales and 7.3 percent for net wrap. 0.113-0.073=.04*$120= $4.80

The total advantages add up to $45.48

With net wrap there are some drawbacks; The wrapping mechanism can increase the initial cost of the baler by 15 to 25 percent. For example, it could add $5,000 to the cost of a new $30,000 round baler. The net wrap material also is more expensive per roll. Depending on the number of wraps and other assumptions, the expense may be approximately doubled from about $0.50 to about $1 per bale, or about $1.25 to $1.75 more per ton of dry hay.

Subtract the cost of the net wrap, $45.48 - $1.75 = $43.73

Asumming a work rate of 10 tons per hour for the average baler http://www1.agric.gov.ab.ca/$department/deptdocs.nsf/all/eng3050#586 and an average working life span of 1200 hours we would expect to bale 12,000 to "pay off" the baler. $5000/12000 = $0.41 per bale

Subtract the cost for the net wraping equipment $43.73-0.41 = $43.32 per ton

So after taking into consideration all the costs involved when choosing net wrap or twine it seems net wrap is the much more profitable product, by a sum of $43.32 per ton. If you would like to figure the cost yourself, John Deere has a nice calculator, comparing the costs involved, though it's not as in depth as the above example.

Let's get back to lime, have you added up all the costs involved when comparing SuperCal 98G to ag lime? With SuperCal 98G you get no drift loss, over 10 million particle per square foot (at a 400# application rate), even coverage, quicker ROI, and a yield advantage.

SuperCal 98G 

Ag lime 

Works faster, money returned quickly with improved yield

Takes years to react, might increase yield in 3-5 years

Improves fertilizer efficiency this year

Improves fertilizer eventually

Less costly per acre

Expensive per acre

Low opportunity cost $6-24 per acre

High opportunity cost $22-$110 per acre

No loss of product to drift

I pay to lime my neighbors fields

Can apply in furrow, or by air machine, spreads evenly with a spinner

Can’t apply with precision, even though you paid for grid sampling


With ag lime you get drift, poor spreading coverage, and slow ROI.

Additional Info

  • Article Reference:: Calcium Products, Inc.
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