Weather Alert

Dairy Demand for Wheatlage Increasing Amid Drought Conditions

Photo: Alphamedia USA

Story Provide by Texas A&M AgriLife

An increasing demand for wheatlage contracts by dairies for ensilage is causing a dilemma for High Plains producers.

Drought conditions in the southwest Panhandle are creating a potential forage deficit in the region, and this is driving up the demand and price for forage silage, said Jourdan Bell, Ph.D., Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service agronomist, Amarillo.

This could mean fewer producers will be taking their wheat crop to grain harvest, opting instead to cash in on diverse forage options for livestock producers, including wheatlage.

Wheatlage is the process of cutting and ensiling wheat as a silage crop to preserve forage quality and can be one of the cheapest forages to produce. Wheatlage is generally chopped when wheat is at the soft dough stage and forage moisture is favorable for fermentation.

Because wheatlage provides an opportunity for producers to harvest earlier and possibly go back with a second crop or even a summer silage such as corn or forage sorghum, if they have the well capacity, there are more people looking at it as an alternative to straight grazing or grain

For more information on wheatlage contract concerns or ensilage concerns, click here.

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