Livestock producers are enjoying a much better year in terms of hay production.
"It's the polar opposite scenario as last year at this time," said Tyler Fulton, president of Manitoba Beef Producers. "It couldn't be more different right across Manitoba. Hay yields are great. The struggle really is actually trying to get dry hay up in good shape because of the frequent rains and high humidity that we're dealing with. I don't think there's any producers really that are complaining about the situation for sure because compared to last year it's just completely different. On the flip side, those that are wrapping bales or putting up silage, they've got a phenomenal quality product with some of the best yields that we've had in years."
Fulton was asked if farmers have completed second cut.
"It depends on the location. I would say progress was definitely delayed, given the spring that we had. I would say for most operations that would take a second cut, they're probably just now, maybe nicely getting started into it. Maybe a third done. I'm talking more about beef operations that are trying to put up dry hay. That's been the struggle. On the silage side, there are operations that have long since completed the second cut and are actually probably only a week and a half away from a third."
Fulton says feed quality depends on how much rain was received. In general, quality is not as good as past years but farmers are still happy with what they're seeing.
He notes pastures are in great condition.
"From the people that I've spoken with, it's kind of exceeded their expectations. We really leaned on a lot of that extra stockpiled growth last year and I think there was a lot of pastures that were beaten up pretty good, just because they were so short. But they came back. This is about a good a year as you could expect, with ample moisture and no sustained hot, dry periods, so we're seeing a recovery that way and I think pasture conditions in general are pretty good across the province."
He says water supplies are topped up, although some areas were washed out due to heavy rain in the spring.