The Jan. 8 deadline for Western hay and forage growers to submit entries to the 2010 Forage Challenge, a new contest at World Ag Expo, is fast approaching.

Forage Challenge is open to farmers and ranchers from 11 Western states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming. Cash prizes totaling $18,000 will be awarded winning entries in three categories: alfalfa hay, standard corn silage and brown midrib corn silage. Entries will be judged based on forage analyses from three labs as well as on visual evaluations conducted by dairy nutrition and forage production experts.

All forage samples must be submitted to the University of California at Davis. Cost: $25/entry. Download the entry form and contest rules here.

Winners will be announced at the expo, which is scheduled for Feb. 9-11 at the International Agri-Center in Tulare, CA.

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