Product Used: Moby Forage Barley
Moby forage barley produced excellent quality small square bale hay for the horse market on the “Scenic Rim” property of Russell and Jenny Jenner, at Kalbar, in the Fassifern Valley of Queensland. Mr Jenner said it was the second year they had used barley for hay on the property and last season planted 60 acres of Moby quite late in the autumn. It was saved for one large cut of hay and produced approximately 150 small square bales per acre in an excellent result. The intention had been to irrigate the block, but after two large rainfall events just after establishment there was no need for any additional watering. Moby barley grew through the early inundations with the help of an application of liquid fertiliser through the boom spray and went on to produce some high yields. Mr Jenner said they targeted the premium horse feed market through the Gold Coast hinterland and other areas and the Moby barley had been well received by their customers. He said there were pony club people who insisted their horses would not be able to eat barley hay. A sample of Moby barley hay was dropped off to try and next week the customers were ordering more of the produce. Feedback from the customers had been excellent with the Moby producing bales of soft, leafy hay which was very palatable.
There was not the wastage of leftover hay that had occurred with other barley hay types. By the start of December almost all of the Moby barley hay had been sold to customers. Mr Jenner said the feedback from the customers had been excellent and he was keen to put more of the forage in for the 2013 season. An earlier sowing date in 2013 could provide the opportunity for an additional hay cut or the ability to cut the barley down sooner in the spring and supply it to customers at that stage of the year. Moby barley is an ideal option for the hay market because of its rapid establishment, large leaf size and good disease resistance. It stands up well and can be windrowed easily. Scenic Rim also produces lucerne hay which is also targeted at the premium horse market. ML99 has demonstrated excellent quality hay when compared to other winter active varieties and an initial plating of L56 lucerne has really impressed with its forage quality. Mr Jenner said it was important to sell hay at the true value rather than “giving it away” and the ability to produce a premium product certainly assisted in this aim.
Russell Jenner, from Kalbar, QLD