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It’s the time of year when all three spirits of the hay year come into view: past (production), present (stocks) and future (markets). For now, it’s the export market that’s likely causing the most sleepless nights.

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Most Progressive Forage readers’ markets have been affected by trade tariffs.

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Competition is dialing into the export hay market, said U.S. Forage Export Council (USFEC) Director John Szczepanski at the California Alfalfa and Forage Association Symposium in Reno, Nevada.

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New Holland introduces the Goweil Kombi bale wrapper

New Holland introduces the Goweil Kombi bale wrapper. Combined with Roll-Belt round balers, the Kombi bale wrapper can bale and wrap simultaneously while reducing contamination and improving quality, effectively helping producers maintain the most value from their forage crops.

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“The good news is that prices were up on Supreme and Premium quality alfalfa [in early 2018],” said Seth Hoyt as he reported on the state of the Western alfalfa and hay markets at the annual California Forage and Alfalfa Symposium in Reno, Nevada. “The bad news is that prices flipped from May to October.” Hoyt noted the decline in hay prices due to depressed milk prices and struggling dairies, as well as the tariff impact from the trade wars with China as affecting overall prices.

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