Tel: 01477 500605



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 Brookhouse Farm, Brookhouse Green, Smallwood, Sandbach, Cheshire. CW11 2XE Tel; 01477 500605

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Haylage Vs Hay

Haylage now has established itself as the “norm” when it comes to feeding forage to horses. Gone are days when haylage was really cow silage in disguise, wet potent forage that caused no end of problems in the horse’s digestive system and gave haylage bad press. Now we have specialist grasses and evolution over recent years of machinery and techniques allows quality, dry, consistent haylage to be produced that is widely recommended by Vets and Feed nutritionalists as a safe and healthy feed for your horse. It is in fact hay that is the inconsistent, unhealthy feed due to greater reliance on the weather and the dust and spores that it can contain, which if inhaled will harm your horse over time and could lead to Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, better known as COPD. To help prevent this hay is often soaked to try and get the harmful dust and spores to stick to the hay where it will be swallowed harmlessly and not inhaled. This is time consuming, pollutes the water courses and leaches out most of the valuable nutrients and trace elements that are needed by the horse leading to higher corn and supplement uses and costs. Hay has to be dried to a very high dry matter for it to be stable in store and stop it going mouldy, but that dry brings the dust and spore issues, with haylage we mow, wilt the grass in the same way as hay but bale earlier to retain some moisture which prevents the issues that comes with hay, but to preserve the grass, we at Smallwood double wrap our haylage with a minimum of 8 layers of plastic film, this seals in all the goodness and allows a mild fermentation to preserve the grass until it is opened and fed to your horse. Our production is entirely natural, we use no additives or artificial preservatives.

Advantages of Haylage Vs Hay in summary;

  • Healthier, for you and your horse.
  • Haylage is dust free - no need to soak hay saving time and effort.
  • More palatable - encourages fussy eaters - leads to healthier horses.
  • Retains more nutrients and important vitamins.
  • Can reduce expensive hard feed usage - saving money.
  • Far less waste - saves money
  • Can be stored outside - save valuable storage space.
  • Works out cheaper.