Depending on what you’re looking for, forage seed supplies range from adequate to extremely tight, said Dan Foor, chief executive officer for LaCrosse Seed. Foor based his assessment on an informal survey of peers during a recent seed industry conference.

Foor broke down the 2018 seed situation as follows:


Alfalfa (both named and variety not stated [VNS] varieties)

Red clover

Other clovers

Perennial ryegrass

Brown midrib (BMR) sorghum-sudangrass

Silage corn

Tight or tighter than normal



Forage oats

Forage peas

Forage sorghums

Sorghum-sudangrass (nonBMR)

Extremely tight

Tall fescue (Kentucky 31 and improved)

Annual ryegrass

Foor noted that the premium normally paid for BMR sorghum-sudangrass hybrids compared to nonBMR types will be smaller in 2018. He also said that pressure on tall fescue supplies is being caused by reduced seed production in both Missouri and the Pacific Northwest. Further, the turf industry also competes for available fescue seed supplies.

One further dynamic in the forage industry is that more seeds are being directed to terminal cover crops, reducing available stocks for forage use.