September 27, 2022

• Year-over-year milk production in the U.S. rose 1.6% in August, according to USDA’s Milk Production report. The nation’s dairy herd produced 19.02 million pounds of milk during the month, although the herd size was 11,000 fewer cows than a year ago. On a monthly basis, the herd size has grown by 12,000 head over the past two months.

• Milk production in Texas and South Dakota are exploding, up 8.9% and 14.5%, respectively, from August 2021.

• Cattle and calves on feed for the U.S. slaughter market (feedlots with capacity of 1,000 or more head) totaled 11.3 million head on September 1. The inventory was slightly above a year ago and is the second highest September 1 inventory since tracking began in 1996. Placements in feedlots during August totaled 2.11 million head, which was slightly above 2021, while marketings of fed cattle during August totaled 2 million head, 6% more than last year.

• Fall grazing decisions can have a profound impact on future forage production.

• Problems with nitrate and prussic acid poisoning can be prevented by testing the forage.

September 20, 2022

• Alfalfa hay exports to all countries totaled 267,127 metric tons (MT) during July, which was up 24% from a year ago. Through July, alfalfa hay exports are now about 2% ahead of 2021, according to the USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service.

• China was back in the alfalfa market in a big way, importing 176,154 MT of U.S. product during July. That was the country’s highest monthly total since August of last year. Through July, alfalfa exports to China were running nearly 7% ahead of last year.

• For hay other than alfalfa, exports to all countries through July are about 7% behind 2021.

• Here are some thoughts on alfalfa and grass harvest management this fall.

• This National Farm Safety and Health Week, which is our annual reminder to keep people who work on farms both safe and healthy. Harvesting forage and working with livestock is rewarding, but they offer a multitude of possibilities for injuries and stress. Although these can’t be eliminated, we can do everything possible to help limit the risk.

September 13, 2022

There are always these considerations when taking a late fall alfalfa cutting.

Fall is an excellent time to get weeds under control in pastures and hayfields.

The National Alfalfa & Forage Alliance is offering a virtual Alfalfa Intensive Training Seminar from October 11 to 13.

For many states, 2023 signup deadlines for forage production actual production history (APH) or alfalfa seed crop insurance coverage (where available) are approaching soon.

Keep pastures productive this fall and moving forward.

September 6, 2022

Cocklebur is becoming a problematic pasture weed in Ohio.

A new extension forage specialist was hired in Pennsylvania.

Taking shortcuts and longcuts.

Fill the forage gaps after a challenging summer.

Be aware of silo gas as the corn silage harvest begins.