From The Fence Post (Eric Brown):
Lack of moisture in southern Colorado — where 12 counties were declared disaster areas by the federal government recently — and in neighboring states like Kansas, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Texas and New Mexico — is leaving farmers in those areas struggling to grow feed for their livestock. That is driving up the demand and price of hay for producers where the crop is still growing.
At the end of July alfalfa prices across the board for northeast Colorado were about $50 to $70 higher than they were a year ago. Prices ranged from about $190 to $210 per ton for premium alfalfa down to about $140 to $150 for fair quality hay.
“On the one hand, you like it as a hay farmer because you can sell your commodity for a higher price,” said Jerrold Brethauer of Kersey, Colo., who farms about 110 acres of hay on his own land and helps custom cut about another 2,200 acres. “But on the other hand, you don’t want to see the high prices hurt the livestock industry.”