One primary advantage of using a square hay baler is that square bales of hay are more resistant to spoilage than the larger round bales. As opposed to the larger round bales, smaller square bales can be stored with relative ease without the use of special equipment.
Even small barns are capable of efficiently storing small square bales. This results in greater protection from precipitation and sunlight, which eventually spoils the hay. By contrast, uncovered round hay bales often incur up to 10 percent in losses due to spoilage.
Some owners and breeders of livestock that are particularly susceptible to illness from molds and bacteria prefer to purchase square bales due to the lower risk of harmful toxins from spoilage. Square bales also allow farmers greater control during feeding, as some animals are unable to regulate their own food intake.
Additionally, some hay consumers may not have the capacity or need to handle large round bales. Square bales weigh approximately 50 pounds, which allows people to move them by hand if needed. However, large round bales can weigh as much as one ton, making them impractical to move without specialized equipment.
If the producer's market is predominately small farmers with limited access to equipment, a square baler might quickly create a market advantage for the producer. A similar advantage exists for producers in close proximity to horse farms, which often require greater caution when feeding, as horses are not as resilient as cattle or pigs.