A move to all cash prizes and two new awards will highlight the 2009 World's Forage Analysis Superbowl.

The first change is aimed primarily at increasing participation in the 26-year-old forage quality contest, says Chairman Ron Sorensen.

“We'd like to see a significant increase in entries, and we think they'll see more value in cash prizes,” he says.

In the past, top winners each received a year's use of forage equipment and finalists got bags of alfalfa seed, hay preservatives, etc. But there sometimes was difficulty matching winners and prizes, Sorensen says. Some got equipment or other prizes they couldn't use, for example.

Shipping the prizes was difficult and expensive, too, adds Dan Undersander, contest coordinator.

“We think this will make it easier to get the prizes to individuals and easier for people to get a worthwhile prize no matter where they are in North America,” he says.

The overall contest winner, top first-time entrant, six category champions and top finalists in each category all will get cash, say Sorensen and Undersander. In addition, two special quality awards will be presented, one to a hay, haylage or baleage entrant and one for corn silage.

Each of those awards will recognize an entrant who achieved outstanding results for a specific quality trait not among those used to pick other Superbowl winners. The award might be for low ash content or high starch availability in hay-crop categories, for example, or for high protein in corn silage, says Undersander. The traits and winning entrants will be announced when other winners are named.

Contest rules and entry forms are available at agsource.crinet.com. Sept. 3 is the entry deadline.

For more information, call Sorensen at 651-271-6837.

Sponsors of this year's Superbowl include Mycogen Seeds, Kuhn North America, Syngenta/NK Brand Seeds, Kent Feeds, Croplan Genetics and Aitchison/Tigerco Distributing Co.

Organizing partners are AgSource Cooperative Services, DairyBusiness Communications, Hay & Forage Grower, U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center, University of Wisconsin College of Agricultural and Life Sciences and World Dairy Expo.