Ge­or­gia Farm Bureau ac­cept­ing en­tries for hay con­test & hay di­rec­tory

Calhoun Times - - LAW & ORDER -

MA­CON, Ga. – Ge­or­gia Farm Bureau (GFB) mem­bers who grow Ber­muda­grass hay are en­cour­aged to enter the 2018 GFB Qual­ity Hay Con­test. Hay en­tered in the con­test will be tested at the Univer­sity of Ge­or­gia Test­ing Lab us­ing the Rel­a­tive For­age Qual­ity ( RFQ) Test, which pre­dicts the like­li­hood an an­i­mal will eat the hay and its fiber di­gestibil­ity. Win­ners will be de­ter­mined by the RFQ anal­y­sis. The dead­line to enter is Oct. 31.

Win­ners will be an­nounced Dec. 3 at the an­nual GFB Con­ven­tion on Jekyll Is­land dur­ing the GFB Hay Com­mit­tee meet­ing. Prizes will be pre­sented to the top five pro­duc­ers. The first­place win­ner will re­ceive the free use of the lat­est 6 ft. x 4 ft. Ver­meer baler for one year cour­tesy of the Ver­meer Man­u­fac­tur­ing Com­pany. The win­ner will have the op­tion to pur­chase the baler at a re­duced price at the end of the year.

“If you grow Ber­muda­grass hay, this con­test pro­vides de­tailed in­for­ma­tion on its nu­tri­tional qual­ity,” said Gor­don County Farm Bureau Pres­i­dent West. “Ev­ery­one who en­ters hay sam­ples in this con­test will ben­e­fit from learn­ing what man­age­ment ad­just­ments they can make to their hay fields to im­prove the qual­ity and value of their hay.”

Con­test rules, ap­pli­ca­tions and in­struc­tions for sub­mit­ting sam­ples are avail­able at the Gor­don County Farm Bureau of­fice or may be down­loaded at www.gfb.ag/HayCon­test. All hay en­tered must have been grown in Ge­or­gia on a field with at least 25 days of ma­tu­rity or re­growth. Hay sam­ples should be nat­u­rally dried in the field and taken from the cen­ter of at least five dif­fer­ent bales ( rolls or squares) that come from the same field.

There is a $ 20 en­try fee for each sam­ple en­tered in the con­test to cover the cost of the lab anal­y­sis. Hay pro­duc­ers may enter more than one sam­ple in the con­test. Any pro­ducer sub­mit­ting more than one sam­ple may only place in the top five with one sam­ple but will re­ceive anal­y­sis for all sam­ples sub­mit­ted. Con­test par­tic­i­pants will re­ceive a de­tailed copy of their hay anal­y­sis in­for­ma­tion.

Checks to cover the en­try fee should be made payable to Ge­or­gia Farm Bureau. En­try fees, forms and sam­ples should be sent to the GFB Pub­lic Pol­icy Depart­ment 1620 Bass Road Ma­con, Ga., 31210. En­try fees, forms and sam­ples may also be taken to your county Farm Bureau of­fice.

Pre­vi­ous first- place win­ners are not el­i­gi­ble to win any prizes in the con­test for three years af­ter win­ning. Pre­vi­ous first place win­ners may still enter their sam­ples for the pur­pose of hav­ing them of­fi­cially an­a­lyzed.

GFB is also ac­cept­ing hay di­rec­tory list­ings. Farm Bureau mem­bers with hay for sale or who of­fer cus­tom har­vest­ing or cus­tom sprig­ging are in­vited to list their hay and/ or ser­vices in the GFB Qual­ity Hay Di­rec­tory pub­lished on the GFB website. Be­cause this di­rec­tory is on­line, hay can be listed or re­moved from the site as in­ven­tory dic­tates.

To par­tic­i­pate, com­plete a sub­mis­sion form by vis­it­ing your county Farm Bureau of­fice or on­line at www. gfb. ag/ hay. Please in­clude a $ 10 check made payable to Ge­or­gia Farm Bureau for each list­ing of hay, cus­tom har­vest­ing or cus­tom sprig­ging. Mul­ti­ple list­ings are al­lowed. Hay pro­duc­ers who enter the GFB Qual­ity Hay Con­test re­ceive a free list­ing in the GFB Hay Di­rec­tory, if they so choose.

Founded in 1937, Ge­or­gia Farm Bureau is the largest gen­eral farm or­ga­ni­za­tion in the state. Its vol­un­teer mem­bers ac­tively par­tic­i­pate in lo­cal, dis­trict and state ac­tiv­i­ties that pro­mote agri­cul­ture aware­ness to their non- farm­ing neigh­bors. GFB of­fers its mem­bers a wide va­ri­ety of ben­e­fits, in­clud­ing in­sur­ance, but en­roll­ment in any of the mem­ber ben­e­fits is op­tional and not a re­quire­ment for mem­ber­ship.

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