Cold spring stunts upper Midwest hay crop

 Resize text         Printer-friendly version of this article Printer-friendly version of this article

A hay shortage is looming for producers in the Upper Midwest after a cold spring hit the region’s alfalfa crop hard. Dairy farmers, in particular, are affected by this "winter-kill," according to Fox 11 News in Wisconsin.

The degree of this year’s winter-kill may mean there won’t be enough hay from alfalfa to go around, forcing livestock producers to replace it with other grains. 

Replacement feed will produce milk, "but it's not gonna produce milk like alfalfa would. We'll get by, but we're not gonna get the milk production that you normally would," said Dan Brick, owner of Brickstead Dairy in Greenleaf, Wis.

The stunted alfalfa crop will also impact attempts to re-plant. Read, “Alfalfa crop hit hard by ‘winter kill’”

Further to the east, conditions aren’t much better. The Daily Mining Gazette notes that the long winter weather has put a “kink” in the plans of area farmers.  Many of these farmers are seeing their feed supplies dwindle, and while some are willing to purchase hay at “historically high prices.” others opt for feed by-products.

"We're dependent on the weather," Jim Countryman of Polfree Farms near Dexter, Mich., said. "As a farming friend once said, 'Mother Nature rules and she rules absolutely.'"

Read more here.

Recently, the University of Minnesota launched two web sites to help producers deal with forage-shortage and late-planting issues. Click here more information.  



Comments (1) Leave a comment 

Name
e-Mail (required)
Location

Comment:

characters left

cheryl    
wi  |  May, 16, 2013 at 02:02 PM

since when is alfalfa a grain?


Massey Ferguson 5600 Series

Our most advanced multi-tasking mid-range ever. Perfect for livestock, dairy, hay, and general all-around farm work, these exceptional loader ... Read More

View all Products in this segment

View All Buyers Guides

Feedback Form
Leads to Insight