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Wisconsin producers win big at World Forage Analysis Superbowl

Wisconsin producers win big at World Forage Analysis Superbowl
Winners take home $25,000 in cash prizes.

More than $25,000 in cash prizes was awarded to producers participating in the 2016 World Forage Analysis Superbowl held Oct. 5 at World Dairy Expo in Madison. Producers submitted 373 entries in eight forage categories from 24 states and provinces.

Tom Luebke of Mayer, Minn., won grand champion forage honors and was awarded a $2,500 check from Kemin for his grass hay entry.

The grand champion first-time entrant cash award of $1,500 went to Garden Valley Genetics of Hixton. The prize money was made possible by Kuhn North America.

Category winners

Champions of the eight forage categories and their sponsors include several from Wisconsin. Here are the Wisconsin winners:

FIRST-TIME ENTRANT: Garden Valley Genetics of Hixton won the champion first-time entrant award and $1,500 from Kuhn North America of Brodhead during the World Forage Analysis Superbowl. Presenting the check is Heather Atkins (left) of Kuhn North America to Justin, Darci and Weston Daniels as Al Deming (right) board president of World Dairy Expo, looks on. (Photo by Harlen Persinger)

• Paradise Rose Rueth of Oxford had the champion grass hay entry sponsored by Barenburg USA.
• New Day Dairy of Athens had the champion haylage entry sponsored by Ag-Bag.
• Pounder Brothers Inc. of Delavan had the champion organic hay entry sponsored by Blue River Hybrids.
• New Day Dairy of Athens had the champion Quality Counts hay/haylage sponsored by Croplan by WinField.

Each category's top finisher received $1,500. Second-place winners received $500; third place, $250; and fourth place, $100 each.

In addition, two Quality Counts awards were presented for forage quality production. However, the criteria for selection are unknown to the contestants at the time of entry. This year's hay/haylage and corn silage winners were selected based on MIR kd rate calculations. (MIR stands for Mertens Innovation Research; kd rate is the rate of fiber digestion.) These rates are based on in vitro analysis of multiple neutral detergent fiber digestibility time points and uNDF240 (undigested NDF), providing a timeline for fiber digestibility. Croplan by WinField presented each winner with $1,000. The top entry for the Quality Counts corn silage was Schwantes Dairy of Perham, Minn. New Day Dairy of Athens topped the Quality Counts hay/haylage category.

Growers from across the United States and Canada were invited to send their best samples in either dairy or commercial divisions. Dairy samples are judged 60% on lab analysis, 30% on visual judging and 10% on calculated milk per ton. Commercial entries are judged 70% on lab analysis and 30% on visual judging. Dairyland Laboratories in DePere tested the samples.

Sponsors for the World Forage Analysis Superbowl include category sponsors Ag-Bag, Agri-King, Agrisure Traits, Barenbrug USA, Blue River Hybrids, Croplan by WinField, Kemin, Kuhn North America, Mycogen Seeds, Nexgrow alfalfa and W-L Research. Additional support is provided by the National Hay Association as the Silver Sponsor and Mycogen Seeds as a Platinum Sponsor.

Organizing partners for this year’s contest include Hay & Forage Grower magazine, Dairy Business Communications, Dairyland Laboratories Inc., U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison and World Dairy Expo.

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