Stronger alfalfa hay exports to China, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, and Japan in August more than offset a sharp decline in alfalfa exports from West Coast ports to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), according to the U.S. Census Bureau. While South Korea had the biggest percent boost at 68 percent over a year ago or 8,395 more metric tons (MT), alfalfa hay exports to China were up 13,219 MT or 18 percent above the 71,530 MT in August of last year.
Alfalfa hay exports to Saudi Arabia in August were up 14 percent from 2018 and exports to Japan were up 4 percent (up 9 percent according to Japanese port data). Alfalfa hay exports to the UAE were down 32 percent in August compared to a year ago. Due to the 10 percent overall rise in alfalfa hay exports from the West Coast in August, the January through August alfalfa exports were up 1 percent from the first eight months of 2018.