Hay Market Research: Czech Republic

Part
01
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Part
01

Hay Market Research: Czech Republic, Part 1

Czech Republic produced over a million tonnes of hay in 2017. The total market value of hay it produced and the amount of hay exported and imported annually could not be identified or deduced despite several search avenues - most of which have been explained below. The attached spreadsheet has been filled out accordingly.

RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS

  • In 2017, Czech Republic produced 1,331 thousand tonnes of hay.
  • The total market value of forage plants produced by the country was €473 million ($555 million) in 2019.
  • Czech Republic's exports trade value for hay was $17 million in 2019, with its imports trade value being $25.7 million.
  • Its exports trade value for forage crops was $6.77 million, while its imports trade value for these crops was $1.75 million in 2019.

RESEARCH STRATEGY

In order to determine the requested data on hay production in Czech Republic, we first consulted government resources, such as the website of the Ministry of Agriculture in the country. While articles provided by this website were PDF files in Czech - which means the entire files could not be translated, we were able to manually translate data specific to hay. This helped in finding the total hay produced in the country. However, the total market value of hay, as well as, import and export data, could not be found in any of the documents or articles offered by the country's Ministry of Agriculture.

Our next step involved scouring agriculture journals in Czech Republic or Europe in general. The European Commission offered a statistics fact sheet on Czech Republic. This fact sheet included the production output of various agricultural goods, such as cereals, industrial crops, and dairy, however, there was no mention of hay specifically. It appears hay was categorized under forage plants. According to this resource, forage plants produced by Czech Republic is worth €473 million ($555 million).

Next, we attempted expanding our scope to trusted databases that offer data on the import and export of different agriculture products by country. Through this, we encountered OEC World. Although this resource offered the imports and exports trade value of hay in Czech Republic, the data was only expressed in dollars, not in tonnes.

The above mentioned resources did not provide any data on hay consumed by cows, horses, sheep, goats, and pets in the country, neither did it offer any information on hay consumed by animals in the country at large. As a result, NA has been entered into rows D to G.
Part
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Part
02

Hay Market Research: Czech Republic, Part 2

Due to the small dairy market in the Czech Republic, hay is not produced in great quantities. Reygrass and oats are, however, one of the popular plants in the country, accounting for 1% and 2%, respectively, of the total agriculture yield in the country. All the available information has been included in the spreadsheet.

Notes

  • While dairy production in the Czech Republic has been declining, alfalfa and grass-clover mixtures are some of the widely used hay products due to their high nutritional value.
  • Reygrass and oats are some of the more widely cultivated grasses in the Czech Republic, accounting for 1% and 2%, respectively, of the total agriculture yield.
  • The total land covered by pastures was estimated to be 0.9 million hectares.

Research Strategy

We began our research by going through some of the government databases in the Czech Republic. Unfortunately, due to the language barrier, we were not able to find the total yields for any of the hay crops detailed in the spreadsheet. We then moved to searching for information provided by the European Union, specifically from the FAO and the USDA. Using this method, we were able to find the total production of reygrass and oats as well as information on the use of alfalfa and clover. Unfortunately, we were not able to find any numeric information for the other types of hay crops. There is a big possibility that the responsible agriculture bodies simply do not record the production yields of those hay crops as their production is too small. In fact, one of the sources mentioned that grasses were not very popular in the area due to the environment and the terrain in the country.
Part
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Part
03

Hay Market Research: Czech Republic, Part 3

While the information on the percentage of the hay bales produced in the Czech Republic that are bailed into large bales, small bales, round bales, pellets, and others, was unavailable, the research strived to provide some useful information: most hay bales on sale are in cylindrical/round structures. Below is an overview of the available information, as well as an explanation of the research methodology. N/A has been filled in row 7 of the attached spreadsheet.
  • Based on companies such as Ztracená Podkova that produce and stock hay, as well as e-commerce platforms such as Bazos and Bazar, most hay bales on sale are in cylindrical/round structures.
  • Round hay bales with 125 cm diameter weighs between 220 kilograms and 230 kilograms, while those with diameters of 145 cm weigh about 275 kilograms.
  • Round hay bales with 150-cm diameters weigh about 380 kilograms, while square bales of 230 x 120 x 90cm weigh 495 kilograms. This was among the few available mention of square bales.
  • A page from a feed/pasture-focused site in the Czech Republic insinuates that the "normal size of bales in the Czech Republic" is 120 cm in diameter. The length is about 120 cm.
  • According to a Czech-based farmer's forum, most farmers seem to discourage the production of smaller bale sizes (15 cm) because of the costs associated with wrapping.

Research Strategy

To find or calculate the percentage of the hay produced in the Czech Republic that are bailed into large bales, small bales, round bales, pellets, and others, the research team began by searching through the public domain for data provided by industry-specific and market research reports. We also explored relevant government resources such as the Ministry of Agriculture, Institute of Agricultural Economics and Information (ÚZEI), government statistics resources such as the Czech Statistics Office. During our research, we also looked out for any reports produced by international authorities such as the European Union, the USDA, and FAO in the hope that we will find helpful Czech-focused or regional statistics. Our search was conducted in English and Czech, in case the information was only available locally. However, our efforts only produced reports on the amount of hay produced in the country as well as the mode of disposal (how they are sold).

Having found no readily available data from credible resources, the research team elected to identify and explore various distribution channels and sites in which hay is sold in the Czech Republic. Our intention was to find reports from hay distributors regarding the most common sizes and structures of hay bales that are sold. This would have enabled us to triangulate the required information. Also, we looked for any farmer/agriculture forums that might have discussions that would be helpful to our quest. We found companies such as Ztracená Podkova that produce and stock hay, as well as e-commerce platforms such as Bazos and Bazar. While we managed to identify the structures and sizes of hay bales available in the Czech Republic, there was no way of determining the actual number in each size/structure category. Notably, during our research, we noticed that most hay bales on sale are in cylindrical/round structures. Almost all searches for imagery of hay bales in the Czech Republic showed round bales. We could not find very few mentions of large square bales or pellets in the Czech Republic.

As a last resort, the research team decided to identify and explore the largest producers of hay in the Czech Republic in the hope of finding data on their sales/production statistics, as well as best practices as pertaining hay bailing. Unfortunately, we could not identify specific companies/individuals as top producers/balers of hay in the Czech Republic. After, extensive research, we concluded that the information is not publicly available, and the limited information found online could not allow it to be calculated. The information could be lacking because a very small percentage (4.41%) of hay produced in the Czech Republic is sold directly to the market, with about 81.6% bartered among farmers.
Part
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Part
04

Hay Market Research: Czech Republic, Part 4

The types of hay producers in the Czech Republic could not be identified despite extensive search in several sources. The attached spreadsheet has been populated with the required information.

Summary

  • According to a report by the Institute of Agricultural Economics and Information (UZEI), about 4% of hay produced was sold through direct sales and sales co-operative.
  • About 82% of the hay produced was traded with other farmers. Hay that is used on the farm including what is traded with other farmers is estimated to be 96% (100%-4%).

Research Strategy

To provide the requested data, we started by searching through government resources such as the Ministry of Agriculture of the Czech Republic. We were able to provide information on product marketing using Google Translate because the sources addressing the subject matter were primarily in Czech. Information on how hay is made by small and commercial producers was not provided by the articles available on the Czech's Ministry of Agriculture website.

We also searched statistical databases such as the OEC World and Food and Agriculture Organization. Although these sources provided some data on hay in the Czech Republic such as export and import, information regarding hay producers in the Czech Republic could not be identified.

Our next step was to look for this information in agriculture journals published in the Czech Republic and Europe in general. We found a statistics fact sheet on the Czech Republic by the European Commission. Although the source provided data on agricultural goods like dairy and cereal, data on hay was not available. Our attempt to triangulate this information was not successful because we were not able to find any data to use for the triangulation.



Part
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Part
05

Hay Market Research: Czech Republic, Part 5

Based on the calculations outlined below, dairy cows consume roughly between 1.8 million and 2.4 million metric tons of hay per year, while beef cattle consume about 749,330 to 1.1 million metric tons of hay per year. Horses consume about 198,673 to 264,897 metric tons of hay per year Czech Republic, while sheep and goats consume approximately 64,404 to 74,442 metric tons of hay per year. Due to the overall lack of data, these are the closest estimates that could be arrived at. This data has been added to Row 7, Columns AI-AM of the attached spreadsheet.

Dairy Cows

  • There are 364,300 dairy cows in Czech Republic. A dairy cow will typically eat around 30-40 lbs of hay per day (or, 10,950 lbs. to 14,600 lbs. per year). This means that among total dairy cows in Czech Republic, about 3,989,085,000 lbs. to 5,318,780,000 lbs. are consumed per year (364,300 x 10,950 and 364,300 x 14,600). This equates to roughly 1,809,418.52 to 2,412,558.03 metric tons.

Beef Cattle

  • Czech Republic has around 226,300 beef cows. A beef cow will typically eat somewhere around 20-30 lbs. of hay per day depending on its size and hay moisture (7,300 lbs. to 10,950 lbs. per year). This means that among total beef cattle in Czech Republic, about 1,651,990,000 to 2,477,985,000 lbs. of hay are consumed per year (226,300 x 7,300 and 226,300 x 10,950). This equates to roughly 749,330.1 to 1,123,995.1 metric tons.

Equine

  • There are around 80,000 horses in Czech Republic. A horse will typically eat between 15 and 20 lbs. of hay per day (or, 5,475 lbs. to 7,300 lbs. per year). This means that among total horses in Czech Republic, about 438,000,000 to 584000000 lbs. of hay are consumed per year (80,000 x 5,475 and 80,000 x 7,300). This equates to roughly 198,673.5 to 264,897.9 metric tons.

Sheep and Goats

  • There are 218,915 sheep in Czech Republic. Sheep will eat around 1.5 lbs. of hay per day (or, 547.5 lbs. per year). This means that among total sheep in Czech Republic, about 119,855,962.5 lbs. of hay are consumed per year (218,915 x 547.5). This equates to roughly 54365.75 metric tons.
  • There are about 30,316 goats in Czech Republic. Goats will eat around 2-4 lbs. of hay per day (or, 730 lbs. to 1,460 lbs. per year). This means that among total goats in Czech Republic, about 22,130,680 to 44,261,360 lbs. of hay are consumed per year (30,316 x 730 and 30,316 x 1,460). This equates to roughly 10,038.3 to 20,076.6 metric tons.
  • For sheep and goats total, this equates to around 64,404.05 to 74,442.35 metric tons (54365.75 + 10,038.3 and 54365.75 + 20,076.6).

Pets

  • Since there was no reliable data on the total number of pets in Czech Republic, it was calculated using the available information. Dogs represent 37% or 2.2 million of all pets in the country. This means that there are about 5,945,946 pets (2,200,000/37 x 100) in Czech Republic.
  • Rabbits and rodents represent 6% and 4% of all pets in Czech Republic. Therefore, there are about 594,595 pets (10% x 5,945,946) that are likely to be fed hay.
  • A typical 6 lb. rabbit will eat about 10 lbs. of hay per month (about 0.33 lbs per day, or 5.28 oz). Guinea pigs eat at least 1 oz. of hay per day. Hamsters and gerbils may eat hay, but will typically only consume small amounts at their leisure (overall less than 12 grams of all foods per day, or 0.035 oz).
  • The overall calculated average across these small mammal types is then 6.315 oz. of hay per day (2304.975 oz. per year). This means that among small mammal pets in Czech Republic, somewhere in the ballpark of 1,370,526,610.13 ounces of hay are consumed per year (594,595 x 2304.975). This equates to roughly (likely less than) 38,853.78 metric tons.

Research Strategy

After researching extensively, it was determined that the data on the amount of hay consumed by various animal species in the Czech Republic is not available. Our research began by searching for and through the public domain for any data provided by market research and industry-specific reports. We also searched for any reports or statistics released by government resources such as the Czech Statistics Office and the Czech Institute of Agricultural Economics and Information (ÚZEI), as well as relevant government authorities including the Ministry of Agriculture. Additionally, we looked for any reports produced by international bodies such as the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the European Union. While we managed to find some statistics including the tonnage of hay produced in Czech Republic, there was nothing on the amount consumed by specific animals. It is possible that this data is unavailable because levels of animal hay consumption in Czech Republic are neither reported nor compiled. This would make it difficult to track end-use of hay bales by animal type at the country level.

Having found no readily available statistics, the research team decided to triangulate the required information. We did this by finding the number of dairy cows, beef cows, horses, goats, and sheep, then multiplying by the amount of hay consumed by each animal species. Unfortunately, we had to use some figures/data from articles because we could not locate information on hay consumption levels from government or market research sources. Also, we could not find data specific to the hay consumption by animals in Czech Republic. Notably, even among same animal species (e.g. dairy cows), the amount of hay consumed per animal varies based on factors such the animal's health and size, or weather conditions. Economic factors would also impact the amount of hay fed to the animals. Since it was not possible to take all of these variables into account, the above figures should be treated as ballpark figures.

Furthermore, we determined that 'pet' is a subjective term, and it is based on the owner's relationship with the animal. This means that any number of animals, including cows and goats, would be considered pets. However, we found a survey of Czech households regarding the types of pets that they keep the most. Among the preferred pets, rabbits and small rodents (which would include hamsters, gerbils, and guinea pigs) are the only pets that are likely to be fed hay. Therefore, we calculated the estimates for the consumption of hay by rabbits and rodents, and then used it as a proxy for the entire pet category. The calculations have been detailed above. Kindly note that conversion calculators were used for converting pounds to metric tons. Due to the overall lack of data, these are the closest estimates that could be arrived at.
Part
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Part
06

Hay Market Research: Czech Republic, Part 6

Research Methodology:

Our Research indicated that limited information was available about hay agriculture on Czech Republic government websites. In addition, research was also limited because of the language barrier which added more time by going through google translation in real-time. We used the Czech nomenclatures for hay (seno) and haylage/silage (senaz), which were effective in directing our research to a 2018 scientific publication on Czech Agriculture System. The statistics mentioned in this research have been obtained from the document here (only available in Czech language, refer to Table 25). In this document we presented a brief introduction to hay and haylage/silage, and methods of value assessment. We also outlined the statistics related to number of farms engaged in hay/haylage agriculture, total production, their sales volume, and percentage of sales to the market or to other farmers.

Background:

Hay and Silage (or Haylage) are popular feed for livestock when they are unable to graze during the winter season. The production of hay, straw, silage, or compressed and pelleted feeds for livestock is collectively known as Fodder. In the Czech Republic, the Fodder crops accounted for 19% of the total agricultural production (2018).
Hay is a grass that is cut and dried to be used as animal fodder (food), Whereas, Silage is fermented and stored in silo (grain stores) before being used as animal feed. Other distinctions include:
- Moisture content: for Hay (12%) and Silage (40-60%).
- Storage and Preservation methods: Hay is mowed, dried and stored in bales. Whereas, Silage is compacted, covered with tight plastic wrap, and stored in air-tight conditions without being dried.
- Digestive capabilities: Animals do not digest Hay, while Silage is partially digested thus having more nutrition value.
Animals do not digest hay. Silage is partially and easily digested, offering more nutritious value.

Statistics related to Hay (seno) Agriculture in Czech Republic:


Hay Sale Statistics:

  • The production of grassland and fodder (hay and silage) was mainly traded with other farmers. Of which, Hay accounted to 82%, and Silage share accounted to 98%.
  • The estimated price of the Hay sold to other farmers, was around CZK 1,520/tonnes (i.e., USD 65.66 per metric ton).
  • Direct sale of Hay was minimal, which accounted for around 4%.
  • Around 7.4% of Silage was exported.
  • The maket cost for Hay can also be found online on this weblink.

Method of Hay Sale:

- Number of farms = 10
- Volume of share sold directly to the market (%) = 4.41%
- Number of farms = 62
- Volume of share sold to other farmers (%) = 81.6%
- Number of farms = 22
- Volume of share sold to other farmers (%) = 98.4%
  • Information regarding percentage of hay that is either stored or sold cannot be found online.

Nutritive (or Forage) Value Assessment of Hay

The macroscopic value of Hay is dependent on quality of the leaf, and the seed material, which is the main source of nutrition, rather than the stems. While, microscopic nutritive assessment (or feeding/forage value) of hay (such as alfalfa) is determined by chemical analysis or near infrared reflectance spectroscopy (NIRS). The following metrics are commonly used to estimate the feeding value, and thus the market value of hay/silage crop.

1. Relative feed value (RFV): an index that uses Digestible dry matter (DDM) and Dry matter intake (DMI) nutritional factors to measure the forage value. The index is largely outdated and replaced by newer index, the Relative forage quality (RFQ).
  • Digestible dry matter (DDM) is the estimated percentage of forage that is digestible.
  • Dry matter intake (DMI) is estimate of the amount of forage that an animal will consume.
  • Formula of RFV = DDM * DMI / 1.29

2. Relative forage quality (RFQ): is considered a better index, and current industry standard. Unlike RFV index, The RFQ index is an estimate of actual forage quality, and predicts the performance of an animal on a particular forage. For example, the RFQ will explain the milk response (dairy animal performance) differences in dairy cows from consumption of apparently similar testing hays. The index is calculated using DM, DMI, and TDN metrics.
  • Dry matter (DM) is the estimated percentage of forage that is not water.
  • Dry matter intake (DMI) is the estimated amount of forage an animal will consume.
  • Total digestible nutrients (TDN) is the estimated total amount of forage nutrients digested by the animal.
  • Formula of RFQ = (DMI, % of body weight) * (TDN, % of DM) / 1.23.
Part
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Part
07

Hay Market Research: Czech Republic, Part 7

The Czech Republic is not a dominant player in the hay market in Europe, as it accounts for only 1.7% of the total EU milk volume, as the majority of their hay products are used by local farmers. The only two hay products that have a bit more popularity in the Czech Republic are reygrass and oats. The recent hot and dry weather conditions have also resulted in a significant drop in fodder crops, which is expected to further increase the prices of hay products. All the information has been included in the attached spreadsheet.

Overview of the haymarket

  • The Czech Republic is not a dominant player in the hay market in Europe, as it accounts for only 1.7% of the total EU milk volume, making it one of the smallest diary markets in the region.
  • The main reason for that is their low production of dairy products, which is the primary market for the use of hay products.
  • The majority of their agriculture land is also covered by crops, with only 0.9 million hectares out of the 4.2 million cultivated hectares covered by grassland.
  • The only two hay products that have a bit more popularity in the Czech Republic are reygrass and oats.
  • A majority of the hay products are used by local farmers.
  • 81.6% of the hay produced in the Czech Republic is traded with other farmers and 4.41% is sold via direct sales and a sales cooperative.

Growth Opportunities and Trends

  • The small agriculture production in the country and the high demand for such products is expected to increase the prices of hay products and other crops up.
  • Additionally, the recent hot and dry weather conditions have resulted in a significant drop in fodder crops, which is expected to further increase the prices of hay products.
  • However, the strong demand from neighboring countries for hay products, like Germany, is expected to increase the production volumes in the near future.

Research Strategy

While we were able to find some information about the haymarket in the Czech Republic, a lot of the information was limited. We focused our research on government reports and industrial research agencies but information was quite limited. Language barrier was also a problem, as the one report that we did find that discussed the landscape of the agriculture market in the country was in Czech, making it difficult to understand the majority of the growth drivers and market conditions in the country. We were able to find two pay-walled reports by Ein Presswire and Research and Markets that do address the haymarket in the Czech Republic but as the information was behind a paywall, we were not able to use those reports to address the question.
Part
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Part
08

Hay Market Research: Czech Republic, Part 8

The strengths, opportunities, weaknesses and threats of the hay market in The Czech Republic have been provided in the attached spreadsheet. Furthermore, a summary of the findings are presented below.

  • The Czech Republic was among the top 20 exporters of forage in the world in 2018. The country exported hay worth $7.2 million during the year 2018. Its strong presence in the international market is a strength because any new major consumers will consider the country a trading partner because of its ability to deliver.
  • There is the existence of a strong worldwide demand for the livestock forage.
  • The Czech Republic has maintained strong business relationships with its six largest importers of hay. For the past five years, the country has been consistently exporting almost the same amount of hay to its top importers. These countries ranked from the largest importer to the smallest include Austria, Germany, Croatia, Slovakia, Netherlands, and Poland. This is an indication that future demand for the product is guaranteed.


Sources
Sources

From Part 06
Quotes
  • ""Objem odhadované ekologické rostlinné produkce (tj. produkce pouze z ploch již v ekologickém režimu) v roce 2017 dosáhl 1 505 tis. tun (navýšení o více než 117 tis. tun, tj. o 8,5 % proti roku 2016), z toho však produkce píce z TTP (přepočtená na seno) tvořila 88,4 % (tj. 1 331 tis. tun sena) a dalších 5,6 % (tj. 85 tis. tun sena) tvořila produkce z pícnin na OP. Celková produkce jen z orné půdy činila 167 tis. tun (11,1% podíl), z toho 42 % tvořila produkce obilovin (70,2 tis. tun) a 50,6 % produkce pícnin na orné půdě (objem v seně). ""