Rainfall and heavy winds can have a significant effect on the quality of hay. Darren Keating, executive officer at the Australian Fodder Industry Association has been travelling around South Australia and Victoria looking at hay crops and their quality.

Site manager for hay processor Gilmac, Mark Heaslip says even though some hay harvests are high yielding and a good colour, bales lack the nutrients that exporters are looking for.

Darren Keating, executive officer with the Australian Fodder Industry Association says, "It's always tricky just at the start of the season to pick what prices are going to be, but I would maybe make an assumption that prices will be back a bit on last year. Who knows. Again, the way those prices hit those peaks last year was one out of the box, but I still think that generally speaking, the cheapest time to buy hay is off the back of the baler."

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