YAKIMA, Wash.-The price of hay is on the rise. Hay farmers are feeling the pinch of high fuel prices and low temperatures, leaving a dent in their haystack.
The price of hay has gone up more than a third of the price. People were paying $175 per ton and are now paying $260 per ton.
The increase in price is forcing customers to sell their animals or reduce their herd.
The cause of high hay prices is the rise in fuel costs. It now costs more to harvest the crop as well as ship it. Also, the cooler temperatures causes the crop to grow more slowly.
Hay farmer Mike Byrd says the weather is holding them up from growing quality hay.
Many hay farmers are trading their hay fields for grain and wheat fields. Grain and wheat are high in demand for making biofuel. That means there is less hay available making it more expensive.