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Category: Hay & Feed News

Southern States Feed acquired by Cargill

My, but how things can change in one year. One year ago, The Eqiuery shared with our readers a press release from Land O’Lakes (which owns Purina Mills horse feed) announcing that it had a signed a letter of intent to acquire Southern States Cooperative, Inc.’s, animal feed business.  The purchase was expected to be completed in January 2017. But that did not happen. However, on September 22, Cargill acquired the animal feed business of Southern States Cooperative, Inc.  Cargill, which also owns Nutrena feeds, is an international ag-nutrition business with more than 20,000 employees at more than 275...

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Purina & Southern States under one corporate umbrella

        As we were getting our December Equiery ready for press, Land O’Lakes, Inc. (which owns Purina horse feed) announced that it has signed a letter of intent to acquire Southern States Cooperative, Inc.’s animal feed business.  This letter follows the announcement earlier this year that Southern States had entered into a supply agreement with Land O’Lakes, Inc. through its WinField United crop inputs and insights unit. According to the press release issued by the company, Land O’Lakes intends to continue to offer Southern States feed and products. “We plan to provide uninterrupted access to the...

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Is The Equiery creating a hay panic?

“I hate when people are scared into falsities. There is no hay shortage, but suppliers will use such articles to charge higher than needed. Please publish facts!”  – Equiery Reader in response to our September issue hay article. Reactions to certain articles usually bring fairly predictable responses from our readers. When we report that good quality hay is plentiful and that prices will be lower this year, no one accuses us of publishing falsities and pandering to hay growers. But as sure as the sun will rise tomorrow morning, when we report that it has been a tough year for hay producers and the prices for good quality hay are going up, we are accused of creating panic just to benefit hay farmers. Understandably, this frosts the flakes of our hay growers! For farmers of any crop, it is all about the supply and demand numbers. As Kaleigh McElroy with Frey Ag explains, as of early September, the quantity of hay harvested has comparable to last year, but because of how wet the early part of the summer was, everything was either baled late and/or rained on, so the supply of good quality hay is significantly lower than last year; lower supply, same demand results in higher prices. But our readers want more facts, not just one farmer’s experience. And so we turn, once again, to Maryland’s Forage Crops Extension Specialist Emeritus...

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A looming hay crises for Maryland?

Hay 2015: A Dismal Picture By Lester R. Vough, Forage Crops Extension Specialist Emeritus, University of Maryland This has been the toughest year for hay making that I have seen in a long time. May was hot and dry–and those hay growers that made a timely first cutting of alfalfa and orchard grass have some really nice hay.  However, the cool, wet spring delayed growth so the May cuttings tended to be below normal yields. During June and early July there simply wasn’t suitable weather to make hay so any first cutting hay that did get put up during that time period was overmature, rained on, or both.  The first cutting hay made in mid-July or later is so overmature that even without rain during harvest it has low feed value.  For those hay growers who did get a first cutting put up in May, the wet weather in June and early July resulted in the second cutting being overmature with a lot of dead (brown) leaves reducing quality and appearance. In some areas the weather has gone from one extreme to the other.  Where I live, we haven’t had any significant rain for at least 5 to 6 weeks and cool-season grass (orchard grass, tall fescue, etc.) growth stopped a couple of weeks ago.   Only the warm-season annuals (crabgrass, foxtails, etc.) are growing and they are even suffering from lack of...

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Why Can’t I find Good Quality Hay and Why Is It So High Priced?

Equiery Hay & Straw Directory  Do you have enough hay to make it until spring? Many Equiery readers are struggling and hay farmers, if they have any left, are pulling out the old, not so great stuff from the way way back of the sheds. Trying to find a source for 30 or 40 good quality round bales is like trying to arrange a drug deal. No one will reveal their sources! So we asked Maryland’s Dean Emeritus for hay, Les Vough.  Why Can’t I find Good Quality Hay and Why Is It So High Priced? by Les Vough, Forage Crops Extension Specialist Emeritus, University of Maryland Most market reports indicate that there is a more than adequate supply of hay available throughout most of the country.  If that is true, why then are horse owners in the mid-Atlantic area having such difficulty finding horse hay?  What the market reports do not take into account is quality – they only look at the amount of hay harvested and in storage on farms.  Yes, there is hay out there but most of it is not suitable for the horse hay market. Last summer was a repeat of several years in a row of difficult hay making weather.  Frequent rain in May and early June resulted in a lot of the first cutting hay crop being cut late (thus over mature, stemmy...

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New Rules for Farm-Related Trucking & Hauling

The Maryland Farm Bureau, in conjunction with the Maryland State Police and the State Highway Administration, are hosting several Farm Trucking Forums to discuss the latest trucking rules and regulations pertaining to moving equipment, large loads, weight limits, etc. and how they will affect your farm business. If you sell hay or haul horses for a living, or even if you just haul horses for your own barn clients, you are encouraged to attend these forums. These forums are being held at no cost and are sponsored by Maryland Farm Bureau, Maryland State Police, and State Highway Administration – and food is included! Mon. Feb. 3, 1 – 4 p.m. Calvert Grange Hall, Cecil County CANCELED DUE TO WEATHER FORECAST Mon. Feb. 17, 9 a.m. – 11 a.m.: Frederick County Fairgrounds Building #12 Mon. March 3: MFB Headquarters in Davidsonville 9 a.m. – 11 a.m. For more information, contact Matt Terreau at or 410-924-4525 MFB Ag Trucking Guide MFB Ag Exemptions Work Sheet...

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