+27 21 9318331 projects@cfw.co.za

Hay Drying Projects

CFW Projects provides the agricultural industry with reliable hay-drying solutions, with a focus on large-scale projects. Ancillary equipment, including the electrical and control systems, is provided as part of our turnkey projects.

Hay production helps to prepare forage for storage so that it lasts longer and provides animals with more nutrition. Where there is an increased demand for high-quality forage and where labour costs are considerable, mechanical hay drying is a viable choice. The mechanical drying of hay allows production losses that occur because of rain to be reduced. It is also safer, as it reduces the risk of spontaneous combustion.

To produce a high-quality product at the lowest possible costs, the drying process must take into account the purpose of the forage, the size of bales, the original moisture content of the material, the installation space, the airflow rate needed, pressure losses, and how convenient the system will be to use.

Most systems use fans and ducts to distribute air throughout the drying area, without additional heating. The type and size of fan that will be used depends on the required airflow rates, which in turn are determined by the types of plants making up the forage and the expected initial MC (moisture content). Correct fan sizing is essential to ensure that costs are kept down and performance is maximised. This aspect of design influences operating costs substantially.

A rule of thumb that is sometimes given prescribes 160 litres of air per tonne of forage for hay containing 25-30% moisture. For dryer hay, only about half this amount may be needed. It is comparatively risky to rely on mechanical drying for hay containing more than 30% moisture. Fans are usually selected to operate against a static pressure of around 0.25 kPa. Both axial and centrifugal fans are used. The latter incur higher capital costs, but may be quieter and are able to develop higher pressures.

The drying system often contains several fans for better performance, and their location in the drying system may be chosen to take advantage of the motor heat that is generated, thus saving energy. Automatic temperature and humidity control with appropriate sensors help to increase the reliability and ease of use of the system. A final factor that should be mentioned is the air distribution ducting. Proper ducting design is important to minimise pressure losses and ensure fast and efficient drying.

Contact Us


Cape Town, South Africa (HQ)

3 Parin Road, Parow Industria, 7500, Western Cape

Johannesburg, South Africa

4 Chilworth Road, Founders View North, Modderfontein, Edenvale, 1645, Gauteng


Cape Town, South Africa (HQ)

T +27 (0)21 931 8331 
F +27 (0)21 931 3165

Johannesburg, South Africa

T +27 (0)11 452 5830 / 5146 
F +27 (0)11 452 5132


Cape Town, South Africa (HQ)


 Johannesburg, South Africa


Mailing address:

P.O. Box 1542, Parow, 7499, South Africa

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