UGA Extension – Jasper County Agricultural & Natural Resources

Georgia's Deer Capital

2017 Hay Contest Seeks Best Hay and Baleage in the Southeast

Hay and baleage producers in the Southeast can earn major prizes at the 2017 Sunbelt Ag Expo in this year’s Southeastern Hay Contest presented by Massey Ferguson. Thanks to Massey Ferguson’s sponsorship, and major support from sponsors for each of the seven categories in the SE Hay Contest, winners can take home cash prizes. The Grand Prize winner will take home $1,000 and free use of Massey Ferguson hay equipment for a year.

Since 2004, the SE Hay Contest has been spotlighting high quality hay and baleage production in the Southeast. The Cooperative Extension programs in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina have organized the SE Hay Contest since its inception. Dr. Dennis Hancock, Extension Forage Specialist from the University of Georgia, is this year’s director of the SE Hay Contest. “We hope every high quality hay producer from Texas to Virginia will enter for a chance to win,” says Hancock. “Our goal is to demonstrate the potential to produce high quality hay and baleage in the Southeast. Just as important, we want to highlight the technology that makes it all possible.”

Forage growers in the SE have increased the quality of their forage as they’ve recognized a need for efficiency due to high input costs. “The key to success has always been timely management,” says Hancock. Dr. Hancock also points out that good management has been made more efficient with the use of improved forage varieties, advanced harvest equipment, and other technologies that have come to the market during the last decade.  “It is hard to recall a more exciting time in the hay and forage industry.”

Massey Ferguson is the major sponsor for the SE Hay Contest. They will be providing the Grand Prize of a new Massey Ferguson RK Series Professional rotary rake or DM Series Professional disc mower for the 2018 hay production season and a $1,000 cash prize.

Each of the 7 categories has been sponsored by additional industry partners. Sponsors will provide cash awards to the top 3 places in each category, including $125 for 1st prize, $75 for 2nd prize, and $50 for 3rd prize. (Individual farms will only be recognized for their top entry in each category)

Hay and Baleage Producers from all 13 southeastern states are encouraged to check out the rules and entry forms and enter today. The deadline for entry into the SE Hay Contest is 5 p.m. on Thursday, September 21, 2017.  Entries must include the signature of your local County Agent to verify authenticity.

More information about the Contest, including the rules and entry forms, is available at Also follow the Southeastern Hay Contest on Twitter ( and Facebook ( for periodic articles, updates, and timely information on producing high quality hay and baleage.