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Derby Lyn Farms
Jul. 30, 2012, 11:03 PM
I have come across a few ads in Michigan on CL for hay going for $7-$12 for a small square bale. This is insane. There is no reason to pay this much for hay in Michigan and people need to stop paying that if they are. I just bought 40 round bales for $25 each, and square bales for $3. My farmer says he is going to still get a 2nd cutting. People are freaking out and getting taken advantage of. This needs to stop. now. Every single year I hear a different story from the farmers as to why the hay is going to be expensive. Too wet, too dry, too many weeds, too thick, too dusty. I do understand there is a bit of a drought this year. But if you continue to pay $12 for hay, you as a hay purchaser are going to raise the price for everyone else.

SuckerForHorses
Jul. 31, 2012, 08:30 AM
And what exactly do you suggest people do? Not buy hay to feed their horses? Not everyone has the ability to travel to get hay. If the local hay guy is charging that much, folks are going to pay it if its the only hay they can arrange to buy.

mronthebit
Jul. 31, 2012, 09:57 AM
A bit of a drought ?

When the entire US Midwest and southeast is dry I'd say it's more than a bit of a drought. I really don't think hay growers are trying to pull a fast one on you this year. As to hay prices rising when it's scarce, that's how the free market works.

Mosey_2003
Jul. 31, 2012, 09:59 AM
I'm sorry, but that's rather pretentious... What do you suggest, chewing out the hay farmers? THAT will keep you in affordable hay, yeah... :rolleyes:

SmartAlex
Jul. 31, 2012, 10:02 AM
Buy the equipment, maintain the land, take weeks off of work, pray for good weather... then you will understand what goes into the cost of hay. If I could ship it to the Midwest for $12 a bale, I wouldn't sell it to you for $3.

Derby Lyn Farms
Jul. 31, 2012, 10:16 AM
I knew I would get slammed, but most farmers are still selling it for $3-$5 a bale. Its the CL "farmers" that are hiking up the prices and freaking people out. I suggest they shop locally and by word of mouth. I'm just trying to help everyones pocket book.

Derby Lyn Farms
Jul. 31, 2012, 10:22 AM
So maybe this is what they will do, I sware this wasn't me that posted this.

http://detroit.craigslist.org/okl/grd/3173462066.html

Hay farmers - $6 (Rip off farmers)

Date: 2012-07-30, 7:05PM EDT
Reply to: w99j9-3173462066@sale.craigslist.org [Errors when replying to ads?]

It will rain again.
I would rather butcher my horses and eat them.

Mosey_2003
Jul. 31, 2012, 10:33 AM
The onus is on the individual to do the research and find appropriate hay at the best price possible. Slamming the farmers because people will pay higher prices just makes you rude. I just don't understand your little hate crusade lately all over COTH about hay prices. What are you trying to accomplish?

2ndyrgal
Jul. 31, 2012, 10:43 AM
Why, with all of the prices for everything raising, do farmers still sell us hay for $4-5 a bale? The truth is, most of us would pay more, and it's the one industry that, for the most part, doesn't increase prices unless there is an extreme scarcity.


If someone lives in an area where hay isn't plentiful, they should have to pay more. Much more.


It's economics, and for one, in a hateful economy, I say that prices that have been largely the same for the last 20 years, most of us are getting a bargain.


Thanks to Tamara and all of them like her and her hubby.

You couldn't pay me enough to do what they do and work that hard, it's why I have a desk job and either trade for or buy my hay.


BTDT in my youth. There were no malls or Micky D's. If you wanted to work, you spent your summer on a hay wagon or in a barn stacking it.

Rode my bike 5 miles to spend the day baling hay.


Good damn thing that the ride home was downhill, that's all I'm saying.

Hilary
Jul. 31, 2012, 10:44 AM
I have to say that for me $7 for a square bale seems high, but when you take into account the land, the equipment, (long term investments) the diesel fuel, the time and the knowhow, (immediate costs) hay for less than $10 a bale is cheap no matter where you are in the country.

Farmers' knowledge seems to be way undervalued. I once estimated that my time (using my hourly rate for my regular job which also takes some know-how but I'm not a doctor or lawyer) and immediate costs (hay string, recent repair bills and fuel) it cost me $2 a bale to make it......

SmartAlex
Jul. 31, 2012, 10:44 AM
Its the CL "farmers" that are hiking up the prices and freaking people out. I suggest they shop locally and by word of mouth.

On CL, they are getting shoppers from all over trying to source hay. Obviously they would advertise higher prices than you would get locally by word of mouth.

asb2517
Jul. 31, 2012, 10:46 AM
Maybe your $3 a bale hay is crappy hay and their $7 a bale hay is nice hay? Ever think of that?

Derby Lyn Farms
Jul. 31, 2012, 10:49 AM
Mosey, I believe I was aiming this towards the individual purchasing the hay. I am not sure what hate crusade all over Coth that you are speaking of? One thread in Around the Farm is NOT all over Coth. What I was trying to accomplish was to let people know that there is still hay available for less then $12 a bale, and not to jump the gun and freak out and buy up every last scrap at $12 a bale. Why the hate against me? I'm just trying to help out the pocket book for people. Is that such a crime?

Derby Lyn Farms
Jul. 31, 2012, 10:56 AM
Let me clarify. The CL "farmers" are most likely not the real farmers. They are buying up bulk loads of hay and reselling for a profit. I pay $3 for a nice timothy/orchard grass fist cutting mix hay. No weeds, not crappy. I pay $4-5 for a good alfalfa 2nd cutting hay, no weeds not crappy. Some people will pay up to $7 for this 2nd cutting, which I understand. But I saw first cutting going for $7/bale.

Michigan has always been a supplier of hay. This state has enough hay to supply other states. Hay is plentiful here. So plentiful that last years is still sitting in the fields rotting because there was too much of it.

SuckerForHorses
Jul. 31, 2012, 11:02 AM
Let me clarify. The CL "farmers" are most likely not the real farmers. They are buying up bulk loads of hay and reselling for a profit. I pay $3 for a nice timothy/orchard grass fist cutting mix hay. No weeds, not crappy. I pay $4-5 for a good alfalfa 2nd cutting hay, no weeds not crappy. Some people will pay up to $7 for this 2nd cutting, which I understand. But I saw first cutting going for $7/bale.

Michigan has always been a supplier of hay. This state has enough hay to supply other states. Hay is plentiful here. So plentiful that last years is still sitting in the fields rotting because there was too much of it.

Well, then good for those CL farmers who know how to make money! I don't think that's a crime. If someone is willing to pay the price, that means they either didnt' take the time to search for it cheaper, or they are willing to pay that much because they don't want to be stuck with their hand over their ass come snow-fly when their hay barn is empty because they were holding out for $3.00 a bale hay from somewhere.

Derby Lyn Farms
Jul. 31, 2012, 11:05 AM
Well I don't think it's a crime for me to post on here that it is still only $3-$5 a bale in other places. Don't know why you all have to be such haters.

hundredacres
Jul. 31, 2012, 11:09 AM
Production costs have gone up and yield is down. It's Econ101 and not a huge surprise. We saw this coming in early June when we only had a 40% yield and saw no 2nd cutting emerging so we jumped in on a hay co-op and we were able to secure hay from OK for $5 a bale because we ordered 36,000 bales (the co-op, not me). It pays to be proactive!

Mosey_2003
Jul. 31, 2012, 11:12 AM
It's no crime at all, and I indulged in a little hyperbole on the 'hate crusade', but I'm pretty sure you commented on a few threads in Horse Care about the hay farmers screwing people too. The crime is the snide tone in which you present the information. Saying, "Hey, there's a lot of hay advertised fairly high on Craigslist, make sure you shop around because I know there are people selling for $3-$5" is not offensive. Your whole OP is, in my opinion.

ETA: I do apologize, I went to looking and the poster in Horse Care was not actually you, so I am sorry for saying that.

Tamara in TN
Jul. 31, 2012, 11:27 AM
oddly enough a letter composed by Himself (Mr Me)on the same subject three days ago:

a word from Himself from a letter to a County Agent:

On the hay.
We do deal with shallow soil in this county such that we are always 2 weeks away from a drought. We have a lot of small fields in this county that the trees suck up a lot of moisture from the field edges. But the biggest problem is ignorance, not rainfall. A year ago, you could buy a 5x5 rd bale for $25/bale. If that bale weighed 1000lb, that makes it $50/ton. The N,P, and K in that bale of hay alone were worth more like $65/ton just to leave the hay on the ground. So the farmer is working hard at losing money! (The flip side of the situation is that the farmer brags that he baled hay till midnight -well everything past 7pm is 25% moisture and is molded thru and thru and he doesn’t' even understand that it probably isn't worth loading on the truck.) The farmer complains that he cannot fertilize, but he cannot fertilize, because he gave his hay away. Because he didn't fertilize, the hay don't grow. With proper fertility, most grass will get buy with about 1/2 of the rainfall that we normally get. We have been spoiled with 50-60 inches of rainfall every year and now that we have a short month, we blame everything but ourselves.


Tamara

Derby Lyn Farms
Jul. 31, 2012, 11:30 AM
It's no crime at all, and I indulged in a little hyperbole on the 'hate crusade', but I'm pretty sure you commented on a few threads in Horse Care about the hay farmers screwing people too. The crime is the snide tone in which you present the information. Saying, "Hey, there's a lot of hay advertised fairly high on Craigslist, make sure you shop around because I know there are people selling for $3-$5" is not offensive. Your whole OP is, in my opinion.

ETA: I do apologize, I went to looking and the poster in Horse Care was not actually you, so I am sorry for saying that.

Hey no problem. Had to double check myself that I wasn't going on some rant in another place about this hay:lol: I have bought up most of my hay already for the winter, as long as I don't acquire anymore horses. I just have a feeling I will come across a lot of tb's that are going to be needing homes this winter. And for some reason I get the phone call for all the tb's that need homes in the area.

Hilary
Jul. 31, 2012, 11:44 AM
Your OP had the tone of "those darn farmers are trying to cheat you", not the PSA of "hey, there is less expensive hay to be had, don't get scammed."


Big difference....

trubandloki
Jul. 31, 2012, 12:44 PM
Your OP had the tone of "those darn farmers are trying to cheat you", not the PSA of "hey, there is less expensive hay to be had, don't get scammed."


Big difference....
I agree, that is how I read it too.

In my area the CL ads are not scammers who bought hay and are trying to sell it. At least not the places I have gone to.

The cost of producing hay has gone up, like everything else.
We produce our own and we were shocked at what fertilizer cost us this year. Add the crazy price of diesel fuel and our hay is pretty darn expensive per bale just to make ourselves.

Another tid bit the OP seems to forget, just because her farmer is able to get a second cutting does not mean they all can. I will use my own property as an example. There have been several times over the last month and a half that it has rained in my area, but not at my house. We are drier than dry. Heck, even the lawn crunches when you walk on it. A few miles south they are not near so dry.

Tamara in TN
Jul. 31, 2012, 12:48 PM
25-18-5 is at Tractor supply right now at $1250 a ton...

wait it's on sale so it's only $600 a ton


Tamara

2ndyrgal
Jul. 31, 2012, 12:56 PM
Most horse owners should spend a season in your shoes.

They'd quit bitching pretty quick.

lwd
Jul. 31, 2012, 01:56 PM
I use craigslist or the hay exchange when i looking for hay. I don't have close friends that are farmers.,I wish i did. Some times craigslist is all you got and your glad you got that. I think paying $3.00 a bale is great but its just luck if you can find it. The price of hay is highly dependent on the weather. The days of cheap hay are behind us.

StGermain
Jul. 31, 2012, 02:15 PM
Tamara - I saw a Huff & Puff truck loaded with hay headed towards Murfreesboro this week and wondered if it was your hay.

I'm planning to fertilize and seed my pastures this fall. How many samples (for about 10 acres) do I need to take the to Ag Extension office? And about how much should the fertilizer and seed cost?

StG

Tamara in TN
Jul. 31, 2012, 02:55 PM
[QUOTE=StGermain;6469600]Tamara - I saw a Huff & Puff truck loaded with hay headed towards Murfreesboro this week and wondered if it was your hay.

Huff and Puff !! good people ! GREAT company to have deliver hay for you if you (anon plural) want to use them

they were prob. taking it to our friend Terry down there


I'm planning to fertilize and seed my pastures this fall. How many samples (for about 10 acres) do I need to take the to Ag Extension office? And about how much should the fertilizer and seed cost?

we take ten core samples per acre and send the to A&L labs in Memphis....seed and fertilizer costs will be specific to your area and type of seed planted...if you like PM me you number and I'll see if Himself could call you and talk to you about it maybe tonight. ??

Tamara

Etnarb
Jul. 31, 2012, 03:50 PM
Do you buy your bulk fertilizer at TSC?

Tamara in TN
Jul. 31, 2012, 04:00 PM
no. we were thru Sunday night and he saw the prices on the bags
but remember that TSC always sells at 100% markup.


right now in bulk
46-0-0 $750/ton (urea nitrogen) one semi=$18,000
19-19-19 $800/ton (N,P,K mixes) one semi= $20,000

and your average grass hay field (in our area) needs about 200 lbs of 19-19-19 and 100lb urea to the acre for the first cutting and then 100lb of urea per acre every cutting after that til frost

compare to 1997 when it was only about $373/ton

Tamara

goodhors
Jul. 31, 2012, 04:07 PM
I knew I would get slammed, but most farmers are still selling it for $3-$5 a bale. Its the CL "farmers" that are hiking up the prices and freaking people out. I suggest they shop locally and by word of mouth. I'm just trying to help everyones pocket book.

We are over in the middle of Michigan, NE of Lansing, and there has been almost NO second cutting that isn't alfalfa. No rain to talk of for 5-6 weeks, so the grass hay fields have fried. Might be some spotty places that got rain, could cut the lengthy grass, but I haven't seen them. I saw a hayfield cut nearby, looked like a lawn that had gone over it's regular cutting time by a couple days. Very thin layer in rows to dry, and that was alfalfa, not grass. Not going to get many bales off those 20 acres.

However the rains have been a bit more generous lately, so with consistant rains in the future, we should get some grass tall enought to cut for hay yet this summer. All depends on rain consistancy to keep it growing.

My pastures look a bit greener with recent rains, but no length to the leaves yet. Haven't mowed fields or house lawn in almost 6 weeks. Only weed tops have any height. Horses here have grazing, look nice with good flesh and shiny coats. Pastures are not thick or lush though, just not overgrazed. Lack of rain has made lot of other folks pastures turn to dirt or been closed off, to prevent root damage from the horses. They are feeding hay now.

So locally, farmers ARE going to be asking more for hay, probably going to get it too. Even shopping around, $3 a bale may not be found right now.

I also am seeing the Chicken Little mentality of "No hay this year, have to buy whatever you find NOW, no matter the cost!!" Those folks are going to do that regardless of what you say. They go ballistic at the drop of a hat ANYWAY, on every topic. You can't stop them from overpaying lots for hay!! Their choice on how to spend their money.

We got in some first cutting, still need quite a lot of hay for winter. If the rains keep coming, we will find hay. If we get no rain, we will have to take other steps for horse roughage. I can't control the rain, so there is no use getting a headache worrying about what I have no control over. I will shop for hay as economically as possible, but sometimes you have to pay for quality.

OP, be glad you have your farmer friend with his lower priced bales. I would buy extra to have on hand, if I were you. Just know that because YOU can find that low-priced hay, not everyone else can even searching hard. Even here in Michigan, supplier of much hay to other places in good seasons.

Mosey_2003
Jul. 31, 2012, 04:11 PM
Heck, I paid $5/bale - which is $1 more than last year, and I got the only load they sold out of their whole hay crop because they're short. I certainly didn't complain about the price. Not really happy that some of the bales were wet, but it happens. That was what, three weeks ago? Hay NOW is going for $7 and more.

Etnarb
Jul. 31, 2012, 04:48 PM
Fertilizer in the SE TN area (Athens area) is $664/ton Triple 19 and $669/ton for the urea nitrogen. The recent rains have helped us some and people are talking about second or third cuttings. Spring was great, and we are actually above average precipitation for July. However, in June we were about 1.5 inches below average. That was the only month we were low (knock on wood) this year.

Wayside
Jul. 31, 2012, 05:30 PM
A bit of a drought ?

When the entire US Midwest and southeast is dry I'd say it's more than a bit of a drought. I really don't think hay growers are trying to pull a fast one on you this year. As to hay prices rising when it's scarce, that's how the free market works.

That was my thought as well. Thankfully I bought a fair bit of 1st cutting before things dried up, but my next-door neighbor is the one I usually buy my hay from so I can easily see for myself that there's next to nothing growing on that field. It's just as brown and crispy as my pasture. Though thankfully we've recently gotten a little bit of rain, so things are starting to green up a little.

Tamara in TN
Jul. 31, 2012, 06:31 PM
Fertilizer in the SE TN area (Athens area) is $664/ton Triple 19 and $669/ton for the urea nitrogen. .

yes the closer you are to the barges at Loudon the better your price...mine are delivered to us prices or send a truck prices

Tamara

QacarXan
Aug. 1, 2012, 03:50 PM
Hay in Colorado is pretty awful, I've heard, to the point that people are having to sell animals they can no longer afford to feed. Experienced people, not the more lackadaisical owners.

Between the drought and the ubiquitous fires, it's probably one of the worst places to hay in America right now. Some friends of mine near Hayden are having half their usual crop in their irrigated meadow, and many pastures (grazing or hay) simply didn't get any green-up whatsoever among the C3 grasses.

big_red_ottb
Aug. 1, 2012, 09:55 PM
I can't ever think of a time when I bought hay for $5/bale...then again I'm in Northern CA. BO just recently got a load of excellent mountain for $13/bale, and that's $6 cheaper than anywhere else because she's long term friends with the grower. Alfalfa just went up to $19.95 from any of the well-known growers, grass is something like $17.95 right now.... Like QacarXan said, we're seeing lots of horses being sold because owners can't feed them anymore. Crazy.

And I should mention that these are mid-sized square bales. haven't seen any round bales around here.

goldenrow
Aug. 2, 2012, 02:01 PM
We will probably not get a second crop of hay this season. Everything is brown and crispy - including the new seedings, which will not survive at all. Which will increase our costs next Spring - which we will need to pass on to hay-buyers, just in order to cover our in-puts.

FYI on fertilizer for hay crops -

The agronomy co-op I work for is priced out on Urea already - meaning we won't even post a price. If you come in, we can get you an immediate price, good for 1 hour. Potash and MAP/DAP are on their way up, as well.

You can also expect your feed/grain prices to head up soon, too. The crops are simply not there to support all end buyers. I would start look to your feed retailers to see if you can pre-pay and lock in a price on your grain through next Spring (when South American crops will be harvested and hopefully be added to the market).

PeteyPie
Aug. 2, 2012, 03:34 PM
I can't ever think of a time when I bought hay for $5/bale...then again I'm in Northern CA. BO just recently got a load of excellent mountain for $13/bale, and that's $6 cheaper than anywhere else because she's long term friends with the grower. Alfalfa just went up to $19.95 from any of the well-known growers, grass is something like $17.95 right now.... Like QacarXan said, we're seeing lots of horses being sold because owners can't feed them anymore. Crazy.

And I should mention that these are mid-sized square bales. haven't seen any round bales around here.

Yes, I too am wistfully wishing I could be complaining about 7$/bale hay. $3 a bale? What a dream! I just ordered hay on Friday. I wanted some cheap oat hay or low calorie grass hay, to lure my little piggie girl from her blackmail attempts (Give me hay or I will crib!).

Alas, the cheapest grass hay was $21 for probably a hundred-pound bale. So I bought my usual order of alfalfa. It was probably the usual price: around $18 a bale. I don't remember because, well, what's the point?

$20 for 100 pounds = $400/ton, right? That's what we pay in California. You guys keep complaining. It's entertaining for me.

big_red_ottb
Aug. 2, 2012, 07:11 PM
Yes, I too am wistfully wishing I could be complaining about 7$/bale hay. $3 a bale? What a dream! I just ordered hay on Friday. I wanted some cheap oat hay or low calorie grass hay, to lure my little piggie girl from her blackmail attempts (Give me hay or I will crib!).

Alas, the cheapest grass hay was $21 for probably a hundred-pound bale. So I bought my usual order of alfalfa. It was probably the usual price: around $18 a bale. I don't remember because, well, what's the point?

$20 for 100 pounds = $400/ton, right? That's what we pay in California. You guys keep complaining. It's entertaining for me.

Interesting that your grass is more expensive than your alfalfa! ...then again I may just be in a weird part of the state.

Regardless, there's been many times I've jokingly contemplated switching coasts just because of the hay prices! Why did I choose to stay here again? :lol:

Went to pick up a bale of alfalfa for a friend today and it's gone up to $21 in the last week. Eesh. But hey, their forage mix (my guy's lunch) dropped 2 bucks...

Bacardi1
Aug. 2, 2012, 07:27 PM
Hay in Colorado is pretty awful, I've heard, to the point that people are having to sell animals they can no longer afford to feed. Experienced people, not the more lackadaisical owners.

Between the drought and the ubiquitous fires, it's probably one of the worst places to hay in America right now. Some friends of mine near Hayden are having half their usual crop in their irrigated meadow, and many pastures (grazing or hay) simply didn't get any green-up whatsoever among the C3 grasses.

That's odd, because my hay dealer just got in a full tractor-trailer load of gorgeous alfalfa from Colorado. 120# bales. Of course that gorgeousness comes at a price (around $33/bale), but it's completely weed-free & the horses don't waste so much as a strand of it.

RAyers
Aug. 3, 2012, 09:51 AM
Because your hat dealer out bid others. We are looking at disposing of horses. Our hay grower for almost 20 years said they could only get 50% of their annual crop and he has 3,000 irrigated acres in the mountains. He upped his prices 20%.

Colorado is one of the states in a extreme drought. We had less than 50% of annual snow pack in the mountains. We are looking to buy hay from Montana.

PeteyPie
Aug. 4, 2012, 12:44 PM
Interesting that your grass is more expensive than your alfalfa! ...then again I may just be in a weird part of the state...

Yes, I'm puzzled by that, too. The orchard grass used to be the least expensive, with imported Timothy the most expensive and alfalfa in the middle. Now, alfalfa is the cheapest and has been for quite a while.

Wayside
Aug. 4, 2012, 03:46 PM
Yes, I'm puzzled by that, too. The orchard grass used to be the least expensive, with imported Timothy the most expensive and alfalfa in the middle. Now, alfalfa is the cheapest and has been for quite a while.

Although it's kind of sad and stunted, the alfalfa in my neighbor's hay field stayed green and kept growing after most of the grass went dormant. If that was happening other places, it could explain why the alfalfa prices didn't go up quite as much as the grass.

Joanz
Aug. 6, 2012, 11:23 AM
We bale hay, and this year we just don't have any extra to sell, at any price. If we do end up with more, we will be pricing it high. We are already looking at tens of thousands in lost income, while the cost of producing what little hay we have has remained high.

Rainfall has been sporadic, coming from thunderstorms that can leave one area dry while another nearby area gets a good soaking. So, if you happen to buy hay from a farmer who got rain on his fields, you might not be getting a look at how things really are in this drought.

If you can find cheap hay, buy it, because there will not be enough to go around this year.

And I'm one of the farmers who advertises on craigslist. Not all the hay ads are from brokers.

baxtersmom
Aug. 6, 2012, 01:21 PM
Yeah, SE MI, it's not chicken little here... the sky really is falling. Very sparse second cutting, and definitely nothing after that. Our BO has two excellent hay suppliers who sold her everything they had and let her reserve everything they might have - last year it was 65 round bales + a supply of squares, and this year they could only do 20 rounds. So she shipped up hay from KY to lay up for winter before prices skyrocket even more. *bows down to awesome BO who was on top on this a month ago*

It's so dry here, my horse doesn't even want to graze on the lawn. He just tries to wander into the barn. :( Rain's done nothing but make a muggy day or two and bring out the flies.