With numerous factors affecting this year’s Alfalfa market, exporters have had to work hard to secure the quality required by customers.
Perhaps the most troubling, the weather during the spring and summer has taken its toll. With unstable weather conditions persisting through most of the harvest season, many growers chose to focus on producing the most tonnage from their fields instead of the highest quality. As fields were allowed to mature, the crude protein and relative feed value of the hay decreased. The premium quality traditionally exported from the western U.S. will be in limited supply.
In addition to weather creating problems for growing hay, the demand has also caused some changes in the market. Over the last several years, the U.S. domestic dairy industry has faced poor economic conditions. This has led dairies to rely on less expensive feeds. As the price of milk has increased the dairies have quickly cleared up their existing inventories of hay. In addition, the prices of other feeds such as corn, wheat, soybean and canola have reached record high levels. This has led dairies to invest more strongly in their feed programs and take aggressive moves to secure Alfalfa.
To address this lack of quality and quantity available, Anderson Hay has worked hard to find additional sources of hay for customers. Our buyers have sourced hay from areas around the western U.S. and increased our supply base across the region. We are excited that our team has been able to rise to the challenge and secured good volumes of Alfalfa to supply the market.