Virginia Forage/Hay Producers Enter Southeast Hay Contest for the First Time
By: Dr. Kathryn Payne. Applied Forage Systems Specialist, SPAREC and Cynthia Gregg, Extension Agent, ANR/UC, VCE – Brunswick County; Virginia Co-Chairs/Contact for the SE Hay Contest
This is the first in a short series of articles pertaining to Virginia Forage/Hay Producers entering the Southeast Hay Contest for the first time in 2020.
This year, Virginia Forage/Hay Producers from across the state answered the call to submit their hay and baleage samples to the 2020 Southeast Hay Contest. This contest asks the samples to be submitted to the University of Georgia FEW Lab for analysis prior to or no later than September 1 of each year. Virginia samples were sent to the Southern Piedmont AREC in Blackstone in early August and were then mailed in bulk to the lab.
Plans were made to let agents across the Commonwealth know about this opportunity to see how Virginia hay producers “stack up” with their peers from across the Southeast. This included, a short Zoom meeting, emails, letters, and social media posts to get the word out.
As it was the first year of Virginia’s active involvement in the contest, the co-chairs hoped to get a sample submitted in a few appropriate Categories for Virginia Forage/Hay Producers. The seven categories include: Warm-Season Perennial Grass Hay, Alfalfa Hay, Perennial Peanut Hay, Cool-Season Perennial Grass Hay, Mixed Grass Hay or Other Hay, Grass Baleage, Legume Baleage. We are pleased to announce that 18 samples were submitted from Forage/Hay Producers throughout Virginia.
The awards are generally presented during the Sunbelt Ag Expo in Moultrie, Georgia; unfortunately, it was cancelled due to COVID-19. The awards will now be presented during the American Forage and Grassland Council Annual Meeting in Savannah, Georgia, on January 4, 2021.
Stay tuned for the awards announcement in January 2021. Plans are being made to recognize Virginia State and possibly National Winners.
For more information on the Southeast Hay Contest, contact Dr. Kathryn Payne at the Southern Piedmont AREC in Blackstone via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 434-818-5542 or Cynthia Gregg at the VCE-Brunswick County Office via email at email@example.com or phone 434-848-2151.
Good Luck to our Virginia participants in the 2020 Southeast Hay Contest and again stay tuned for the awards announcement in January!