Monday, June 23, 2008

New poll for everybody

I am just curious about hay prices. We've talked about this before, but the situation is getting worse and worse. Last summer, I could still find decent alfalfa for $12 a square bale. This summer? Ha. $14 a bale will buy you crap alfalfa. Decent stuff is $17 a bale, and that's with a dollar a bale discount for buying a ton at a time.

How bad is it where you are?

What are you doing differently to make ends meet (you all know by now about my 2nd job, I whine about it enough, ha ha)?

Has JUST the price of hay caused you to breed fewer mares this year?

Has it curtailed your showing or competing?

Have you switched to alternative feeds like pellets?

What are you sacrificing to keep paying for your horses? (All I can say is, I really miss HBO)

What do you think is really going to happen here? I'll tell you, I'm scared to watch. I keep hearing we're going to hit $25, $30 a square bale. Other people say that's just alarmist thinking, but look at the price of gas. Who would have believed 10 years ago that diesel would be $5 a gallon and regular gas $4.35?

Our salaries are not going to escalate at the same rate hay prices are escalating. The marginal horse owners are going to slide into being neglectful horse owners, and some of the good horse owners are going to become marginal.

Is there any solution here? I'm particularly interested to hear from those of you who grow hay, but all thoughts are welcomed.