Now Is The Time To Invest In Advanced Alfalfa Genetics

  • Oct 19, 2022
Now Is The Time To Invest In Advanced Alfalfa Genetics

Milk prices peaked to an all-time high in the spring of 2022 and, while they have come down a bit, they’re still higher than we’ve seen in a long time. With a little extra wiggle room in your checkbook, now is the time to reinvest that margin into technologies like HarvXtra® alfalfa that can help advance your operation forward and set you up for larger potential returns down the road.
“Even back when milk was breakeven, I would encourage dairy producers to consider technologies like HarvXtra alfalfa that can help give them a positive return,” explained Pat Berry, senior product support in animal nutrition for Forage Genetics International. “Now that milk is worth more, I’m a big fan of investing in technology that gives you a payback, as are most people who are diligent in guiding farms on their finances.”
The HarvXtra alfalfa trait is one of the most advanced on the market, developed to improve the quality of your alfalfa compared to conventional alfalfa at the same stage of maturity. Why does that matter? It offers growers unparalleled flexibility in how they manage their crop.

Increased Flexibility

“In my career, I’ve witnessed a number of scenarios where someone gambles with the weather and loses,” shared Pat. “They may have gone out too early trying to beat the weather, and the crop was way too lush and immature. Or, they tried to beat it, the weather came in once they cut it, and it got rained on for three days. At that point, it won’t ferment well. In other situations, they may have waited to harvest once the weather passed, and since it was conventional, the quality dropped like a rock. In all three of those scenarios, they are left with a marginal hay crop to feed.”
With HarvXtra alfalfa, you don’t have to take such risky gambles.
The earlier you cut, the higher the quality, but the lower the yield. The later you cut, the higher the yield because the plant has had a chance to develop more biomass, but the lower the quality. HarvXtra keeps quality for longer so you can wait out rain with less worry. In fact, you can add up to 10 days to your cutting window without sacrificing forage quality compared to conventional alfalfa cut at the same maturity.

Gained Efficiencies

“The agronomic inputs needed to manage HarvXtra are similar to conventional, but they go further when you get higher quality alfalfa at the same stage of maturity,” noted Pat. “Plus, the herbicide costs with the Roundup Ready® trait that’s included in HarvXtra alfalfa are lower than conventional alfalfa.”
Many HarvXtra alfalfa growers even use the increased flexibility to eliminate a cutting from their annual schedule. This saves time, money and energy while maintaining tonnage. 
Contact your local dealer to learn where you can find high-performing alfalfa varieties with the HarvXtra trait.
© 2022 Forage Genetics International, LLC. HarvXtra is a registered trademark of Forage Genetics International, LLC. Roundup Ready® is a registered trademark of Monsanto Technology LLC, used under license by Forage Genetics International, LLC. HarvXtra® Alfalfa with Roundup Ready® Technology and Roundup Ready® Alfalfa are subject to planting and use restrictions. Visit for the full legal, stewardship and trademark statements for these products.