As we move into the beginning of the Alfalfa harvest for the Pacific Northwest (PNW), the weather continues to be a key factor in determining the quality and timing of the first cut. The Pacific Southwest (PSW), which is in full-swing, has also been facing weather challenges.
Growers in Utah, Nevada, and Idaho will begin cutting over the next 1-2 weeks, with some difficulty finding a cutting window due to the erratic and inopportune showers. All growers in the PSW have completed their third cutting harvest with 100% cut and baled, and about 50% of the fourth has been completed. Quality has varied in the PSW, ranging from top quality dairy to low-end feeder hay. Despite the variation in quality, pricing on domestic dairy as well as export continues to be stronger than expected due to untimely showers limiting the green hay. The limited volumes of high-quality hay will continue to be a trend as we move into the hot summer months.
In the PNW, the first cutting of premium Alfalfa has been severely impacted by the weather. There will only be a limited amount of premium available, with limited inventory of non-testing #1 grade as well. As with the PSW, the pricing is stronger than expected.
First cutting Timothy harvest has begun in Washington State with about 10% cut so far. Growers in the PNW are expected to begin cutting aggressively in the next few weeks in both the Kittitas Valley and Columbia Basin as temperatures up to 100° F are expected through next week and some stands beginning to lay over. The weather looks favorable over the next 10 days. A range in the qualities of Timothy is expected, depending on how growers are able to mitigate the weather and high temperatures.
Anderson News will begin its weekly publication schedule, and we will keep you informed as harvest progresses. To have this blog from Anderson Hay delivered directly to your email, subscribe above on the right.