Benefits & Eligibility

How Does the Bird-Friendly Certified Hay Program Benefit Me?

You will be an essential part of recovering threatened grassland birds, and:

As a hay producer, you can grow a new niche product and receive marketing assistance through CVC’s online marketplace. Hay growers can also use the online marketplace to find new land to rent for hay production.

As a hay purchaser, you can simplify your annual hay purchasing process with the online marketplace and support grassland bird recovery. You can market your environmentally responsible practices to customers (i.e. equine boarding clients or consumers of your meat products) to gain a market share advantage.

As a landowner with land available to rent, you can simplify your search for a local producer interested in farming your land by using the online marketplace. Land rental rates can be negotiated with hay producers and land used for agricultural production may be eligible for a 75 per cent property tax reduction through the Farm Property Class Tax Rate Program.

Is Late Cut Hay Good Quality?

"Late season forages can successfully make up a portion of your horse’s or other animal’s diets. Fully-grown adult horses which are on a maintenance diet because they are not being heavily exercised, are not breeding, pregnant, lactating or growing, could obtain all the nutrients they need from mature hay with crude protein as low as 8% and digestible energy as low as 2.0 Mcal/kg. The hay should be checked for presence of molds and neutral detergent fibre, which is an indicator of feed intake and digestibility. It is always recommended that livestock owners have their forage quality tested and consult a livestock feed nutritionist to develop a diet tailored specifically to your livestock requirements."

- Paul Sharpe, Ph.D. College Professor University of Guelph Kemptville Campus

Who Is Eligible?

You are eligible if:

  • You currently grow hay on owned and/or rented lands located within the Credit River watershed and you would like to grow Bird-Friendly Certified Hay on some or all of these lands either for sale or for personal farm use.
  • You wish to rent lands in the Credit River watershed to grow Bird-Friendly Certified Hay on some or all of these lands either for sale or for personal farm use.
  • You wish to purchase Bird-Friendly Certified Hay.
  • You own land in the Credit River watershed and you are interested in having an agricultural producer grow Bird-Friendly Certified Hay on a portion or all of your land.

The Credit River Watershed

For more information on the Bird-Friendly Certified Hay Program, including Eligibility, Production Standards and Terms and Conditions please access the Bird-Friendly Certified Hay Program Guidelines and Terms and Conditions.