harvest

Deft Hand Required To Get Silage Piles Right

silage pile

A deft hand is needed to get the silage piles in the right form. From Modesto, CA, this article also shares with non-farmers what silage is, how it is harvested, and why it is used as feed for dairy cows.

 

Who knew that silage piles — those giant mounds of dairy feed covered with plastic sheeting — could be works of art?

A delicate touch helps when managing the piles, which can degrade if too much air gets inside them.

That's why Larry Pacheco tries to minimize the exposed surface when he removes some of the feed from a pile with a tractor.


Silage, which dairy farmers make by fermenting corn or other crops for a few weeks after harvesting, has become an important feed in the Northern San Joaquin Valley and elsewhere.

And it's another example of the sophisticated work behind the seemingly simple business of producing food.

North valley farmers produced about $212 million worth of silage last year, according to county crop reports.

 

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