The down-up-down-up trend continued in February as the average alfalfa hay price rose by $3 per ton, according to USDA’s Agricultural Prices report. The alfalfa hay price range has volleyed between $209 and $214 dollars per ton over the past six reporting months.

In February, the average price of alfalfa hay climbed to $214 per ton, which was $43 more than a year earlier.

The average price for Supreme and Premium alfalfa hay rose by $4 per ton in February to $266, which followed significant gains the previous two months. The Supreme and Premium price stood at $55 per ton higher than it was in February 2021.

Four states issued double-digit gains in their average alfalfa hay price. Arizona, Oklahoma, and Washington were all up by $15 per ton while North Dakota was up by $10.

Pennsylvania was the only state with a double-digit price decline but only by $10 per ton.

The highest average alfalfa hay prices were reported in Utah ($260 per ton) and Montana ($255). Both Oregon and Arizona posted $250 per ton prices.

The lowest alfalfa hay prices were reported in Iowa ($156 per ton) and Wisconsin ($160).

Keep in mind that the USDA average prices account for all qualities and bale types of hay sold. Also, the final U.S. estimate is a volume-weighted average rather than a simple average of state values. Those states with the most volume sales will impact the final U.S. dollar value more than those states with fewer sales.

Supreme and Premium

The USDA also tracks the prices of Supreme and Premium quality alfalfa in the major dairy states and determines an average price from the five top milk-producing states (California, Idaho, New York, Texas, and Wisconsin). This data is used to determine feed prices in the Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) program.

For February, the average price of Supreme and Premium alfalfa hay jumped by $4 per ton to $266. One year ago, the average price of Supreme and Premium alfalfa hay was $211 per ton.

Other hay

The February price of other hay (mostly grass) increased by $2 per ton to $146, which was $7 per ton above one year ago.

The highest prices for hay other than alfalfa were reported in Washington ($275 per ton), Oregon ($245), and Colorado ($235).

Oklahoma had the lowest reported other hay average price at $100 per ton. It was followed by Nebraska ($102) and Missouri ($105).