A silo is used in the agriculture industry for storing bulk materials, more specifically grains or fermented feed known as silage. Silos are more commonly used for bulk storage of wheat, oilseed rape and barley, and as the growth in population and production increases, there is an ongoing increased demand for these storage solutions.
What’s the Best Type of Silo for the Agricultural Industry?
There are 2 main categories of bulk-storage structures that are used in the farming industry; low-capacity silos for storage on the farm and high-capacity silos for grain storage. Storage silos are typically cylindrical structures, ranging from 3m to 27m in diameter and 10m to 90m in height.
There are several different types of silos, and there are various different designs, but they all serve one purpose; to keep the contents fresh and dry and protect them from attack by rodents.
Metal is the most versatile material used for agricultural silos, as it can handle a wide variety of products and reduces the risk of stock degradation. Wood and concrete solutions can also be used, but they have varying cost, durability, and airtightness that need to be considered.
What is a Silo Used for?
The main function of a silo is to protect the grains from the elements and keep their condition preserved. Silos play a crucial part in grain storage, and as such they often have monitoring equipment within them to track the temperature and quality of the grains.
How Does a Silo Work?
Agricultural silos work by creating a pressurised area within a cylindrical container, and are closed at the top and bottom to prevent air and moisture from entering the silos, therefore reducing the risk of wastage. Depending on the silo, the material can be unloaded from the top or the bottom, and this must be removed within a certain period of time to maintain the freshness of the contents. Tower silos containing silage are generally unloaded from the top using a silage fork, whereas grain silos are typically unloaded from the bottom.
When considering farming storage solutions and deciding which silo to choose will depend on what the silo is to be used for and the budget you have available. Regardless of the silo you choose, the contents must always be free of insects and rodents, mold and chemical residues.