Baffling variations in quotes for fodder
Farmers in search of additional fodder for housed cattle are being met with dramatically different quotes for round bales of hay.
Sellers are quoting anything from €15/bale to €50/bale for last year's hay, although the latter price appears to be more in hope than expectation.
Good quality 2011 hay in Co Meath sold for €25 ex yard late last week, while several loads left Co Tipperary bound for Dingle in Kerry and Boyle in Roscommon at €30-32/bale delivered or €27-30/bale ex yard.
Top quality horse hay is being quoted at €25-30/bale ex yard in Co Kildare but poorer quality hay is available at €15/bale.
In Wexford, quotes ranged from €23-25/bale, with 2011 silages bales also quoted at €17/round bale. In Wicklow, hay was quoted at €22/bale, while large 8x3x3 square bales of barley straw were sold to buyers in the north for feeding at €12-13/bale.
Despite housing a large number of stock due to the weather conditions, livestock farmers seem to be happy to bide their time on securing additional fodder.
Fodder being offered at high prices, at up to €30/bale for hay and €25/bale for silage, looks set to remain on the farm of origin for the foreseeable future.