A southeast Minnesota family farm will host the 25th annual Farm Progress Hay Expo on June 8-9—the first time the Expo has been held in the state.
Hosting this year's forage extravaganza is Hernke Inc. of Cannon Falls. The 2,000-acre farm business is owned and operated by five families: Owen and Gladys, and their adult children Marc and wife Julie, and David; Al and BettyAnn; and cousin Rahn. They raise 500 acres of alfalfa annually, chopping 80% of it as haylage for their 650-cow dairy herd.
The two-day Hay Expo, sponsored by The Farmer's publisher, Farm Progress Cos., showcases the latest in forage equipment and related products and information.
This year's show site is seven miles south of Cannon Falls just west of Highway 52 on County Road 1. The Hernke's farm is the first operation on the right with the tall silos.
'We're looking forward to hosting Hay Expo,' says Marc, who handles agronomy duties on the farm. 'At Farm Fest and the Minnesota State Fair, you see some machinery, but there isn't a lot that pertains to alfalfa and hay production. Here, you'll see everything specific for forage growers.'
Since 1986, companies specializing in hay and forage machinery, seed, and related crop and livestock products have counted on the Hay Expo to bring forage producers together.
Patterned after the popular Farm Progress Show, the event provides an opportunity
for producers to observe and evaluate the latest hay-making technology working in the field.
The Hernkes have set aside 150 acres for Expo. Sections of fields will be used for mowing, conditioning, baling and chopping equipment demonstrations. A 10-acre exhibit site will display balers, choppers, mower-conditioners, tedders, baggers, rakes, telehandlers, bale stackers, hay dryers and more. In addition to the outdoor lots, the Haying Industries Tent will feature other products and services.