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Friday, August 23, 2013


            Entries are currently being accepted for the annual Hunt County Hay Show. Many factors have affected hay production the past several years, including rainfall, and rising costs of fertilizer and fuel. What better time to take advantage of a free analysis of your hay, to find out the quality of what you have produced.
           Having an analysis of your hay sample can allow you to feed livestock much more efficiently, supplementing only what your livestock need during the winter feeding season.
            Entries are due by 5 p.m., Wednesday, September 4, for the show. We hope you are making plans to enter, and will get your samples delivered.
            Entering the show is simple. Producers must take any entries to a drop location, complete an entry form, and you are done. The Extension Office and members of the Ag and Livestock Committee will pick the samples up, have them tested for crude protein, TDN and ADF, and get them ready for the show. It is important to note that entering is free. The fee for testing is provided by the Noble Foundation, and is normally worth $15 per sample.
The following locations will accept entries: NET Farmers Co-op (both the store and fertilizer plant) in Greenville, and Huffman Farm Supply in Commerce.
            We ONLY require a feed sack full of hay to constitute an entry. Samples filling a 50 pound paper feed sack, are all we will accept. We still need plenty of hay for testing and preparing entries for the county show, so for your entry sample, you may put 2-3 blocks from a square bale or a sample from the center of a large round bale to fill the feed sack. Please do not use plastic bags, as they cause the sample to mold before the show, and could cause disqualification.
            Classes include legumes and legume (clover) grass mixes; forage sorghum, sudans, hybrid sudan, and johnson grass; bermudas; small grains and winter annuals; and other, which includes prairie, grass mixes, etc.
Hay will be judged on protein score, and acid detergent fiber (ADF). Entries will not be accepted that have injurious foreign material, hardware, or are moldy, caked, dusty, or badly weathered.
            The actual Hay Show and meal will be held on October 3, 2013 at the Fletcher Warren Civic Center in Greenville.  Hay show winners will be announced that same evening. Tickets, will be available at the drop off locations and the County Extension Office, and are $10 per person, and are required to ensure a meal at the show.
            We hope you will get your entries in for the show. Remember, there is no entry fee, and it is open to all Hunt County producers. Also, if you are worried that your hay may not be competitive, give the show a try anyway. Only blue ribbon hay will be identified as to the producer, but you may be surprised, and find you have better hay than expected. You will also take home lots of information about the quality of your hay when feeding it to livestock.
            If you would like any further information, please contact the Hunt County Extension Office at (903)455-9885, and we will be glad to discuss details of the hay show with you. Hay show rules and entry forms follow for your use. 

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