Is there a market for Low NSC Hay?
Monday, October 25, 2010 at 2:16PM
Belinda Taylor

After talking to clients about numerous mild laminitic episodes this year as a result of this season's environmental conditions, I have had a few queries about sourcing hay that is low in Non Structural Carbohydrates (Sugars).  This year has been a difficult season for client's to manage their high risk horses and ponies.  And it only looks like it will get harder, with hay supplies in short supply and high demand. 

Getting a reliable source of hay for the summer period is going to be difficult with most farmers telling me that they have only cut around 50% of the quantity they would usually cut.  So now is the time to be purchasing your hay for summer to ensure you have enough and some choice.  With the majority of hay in WA being either oaten, or meadow hay consisting of ryegrass and clover, it is generally a high sugar feed.  Horses and ponies at high risk of laminitis should have their hay soaked for at least an hour prior to feeding, to reduce the sugar levels by removing the water soluble carbohydrates.


If you have a high risk horse or pony and are interested in sourcing low Non Structural Carbohydrate hay for the 2011 hay season, please click here to complete our survey.  I have farmers that are interested in targeting this niche market, should there be sufficient demand.

Article originally appeared on Hoof Hearted Hoof Care (
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