Strong Supreme alfalfa hay prices

By Seth Hoyt

Seth Hoyt

Author of The Hoyt Report, providing hay market analysis and insight.

Hot or rainy weather in the Western states through the 2017 hay season is now being reflected in very tight supplies of higher quality alfalfa hay. Supreme quality alfalfa hay prices last week topped at $285 to $305 delivered to Central California dairies, the highest level since the first half of 2015. While many dairies were resisting these higher prices, there was enough demand to push the market to those levels. The overbase milk price in California is projected to be around $15.50 per hundredweight in October. Much of the Supreme alfalfa hay that brought these strong prices was coming from southern Oregon or western Nevada where a few growers were able to put up some higher quality alfalfa. But many growers in the West were not that fortunate, fighting late season rains that damaged alfalfa hay or cooler weather that made it difficult to properly cure alfalfa hay for baling.