Hay prices rose in May, largely in Western states hurt by drought.
U.S. hay prices inched upward in May compared to the previous month’s totals, according to the Agricultural Prices report released by USDA May 30.
The average all-hay price in the 27 reporting states was $202/ton, an increase of $11/ton when compared to April's $191/ton figure. In May 2013, all-hay prices were at $203/ton.
Drought-stricken Western states posted the highest prices in the May report. New Mexico reported an average of $256/ton, followed by California at $246/ton, Arizona at $240/ton and Nevada at $235.
The nation's lowest all-hay prices were $98/ton in North Dakota, $114/ton in Missouri and $120/ton in Nebraska.
The overall average U.S. alfalfa price jumped to $224/ton in May, an increase of $18/ton from the April average. The May 2013 national average price was $221/ton.
New Mexico also reported the highest alfalfa price last month at $265/ton. California was close behind at $260/ton, and Texas reported $252. The lowest alfalfa prices were found in North Dakota, at $99/ton; Nebraska, $125/ton; and Montana, $135/ton.
Kansas saw the biggest hike in alfalfa prices for the month of May, jumping $26/ton to $189/ton. Two others states — New Mexico at $265/ton and Oklahoma at $237/ton — saw alfalfa prices rise $25/ton.
Wyoming, Pennsylvania, North Dakota, Nebraska, Montana and Idaho all experienced small drops in alfalfa prices from April to May.