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Hay exports tumbled in 2023

Hay exports in 2023 totaled 3.171 million metric tons (MT), which was down 22% from the 4.04 million MT exported in 2022. According to data from the USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS), it was also the first time in five years total hay exports fell below 4 million MT.


Declines in both alfalfa and nonalfalfa hay exports contributed to the drop in total export sales. An aggressive exchange rate is largely to blame for top export markets holding back on U.S. hay, as well as low milk prices in other countries and less international trade in general.


Alfalfa at a loss

The USDA-FAS reported alfalfa hay exports to all trade partners totaled 2.177 million MT in 2023, which is down nearly 22% from the record high of 2.847 million MT set in 2022.




Feb. 13, 2024

Amber Friedrichsen


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