Feed and Hay Storage Tips

Feed and Hay Storage Tips

Keeping your horses' feed and hay fresh is crucial to their health, and proper storage ensures optimal freshness.

sorrel horse standing in pasture in front of barn during autumn (Credit: Canva)

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Humidity plagues many regions, and high moisture levels common can make feed freshness a challenge, requiring extra attention to how feed is stored. We reached out to AQHA Corporate Partner Nutrena to find out how their experts recommend keeping feed fresh.

Check out their Keeping Feed Fresh Guide and these quick tips below:

  • Buy enough product to meet your feed needs for 2-4 weeks. Stocking up may result in feed waste.
  • When transporting feed, try to minimize exposure to rain or hot sun. Put feed in storage when you get home.
  • Store feed in a dry area with minimal temperature changes.
  • Avoid direct sunlight.
  • Do not store bags directly on soil or concrete floors.
  • During warm months, consider air circulation for feed not stored in storage bins.
  • Always use the older feed first.
  • Be sure to clean the container you store feed in before pouring in new feed.

Horse Feed Storage Ideas

Many horse owners purchase feed by the bag and transfer the contents into a container kept in a feed room or designated area of the barn or shed. The container that feed is kept in, as well as the location of the container, play an important role in how fresh the feed stays.

  • Sealable containers with lids, such as trash cans, are a great way to keep rodents and bugs away from the feed.
  • A waterproof container will ensure that the feed stays dry if there is unexpected water leakage into the area.

The location that the feed bin or container is kept is also important.

  • Locate the bin in a cool, dry area. 
  • Ensure that your feed room or area is not exposed to unnecessary moisture, such as a leak in the roof or sweating pipes overhead.
  • Elevate the feed bin off the floor, particularly to protect against the event of minor flooding.

Hay Storage Considerations

If you store hay inside, it is important to keep it dry.

  • Make sure there are no leaks in the building or condensation that can accumulate inside the roof and drip on the feed.
  • Keep hay off the floor. A wooden pallet is a good solution, and you can often find these for free.

If you plan on storing the hay outside,

  • Stack hay on wooden pallets or ventilated platforms to keep moisture from the ground off of it.
  • Bales also need to be protected from the sun and rain. Tarps work well for this.

No matter how carefully you store your feed and hay, always be sure to check for mold. Never feed any hay, grain or pellets that looks or smells moldy. Read on for how to select qualify hay for your horse

Nutrena: What's Inside Counts

Nutrena feed isn’t just grown, it’s crafted. Real science goes into putting the nutrients animals need into each Nutrena® feed product. And quality is so important because we know people are relying on us to stand up to our exacting standards each and every time. What’s inside the bag counts. That’s why you can count on our feeds for the animals you care for.

AQHA Corporate Partner Nutrena is one of the world's largest equine nutrition companies, feeding more than one million horses per day. Learn more at www.aqha.com/nutrena.