hay-drying facility.

Hygienic - Intense - Aromatic

Horses need sufficiently structured, raw fibre-rich and hygienically clean nutrition for a healthy life and good digestion. The suitable roughage forms the basis of horse feeding. Weather conditions play a crucial role in hay production. Extreme weather events (rainy or extremely dry phases) are a major risk for a reliable production of high-quality hay. Since 2019, our hay has therefore come directly from a state-of-the-art hay drying facility. The plant can hold approx. 1.000 tonnes of hay, which is dried in 4 boxes.

A special mixture of grasses and herbs grows on our own land > 150 ha on the nutrient-rich meadows and fertile soils at the eastern end of the Black Forest. This area is a high plateau at an altitude of 750 - 950 metres. The unique location means more rainfall, which in turn allows for better growth and more biodiversity under natural conditions. Our calcareous "Lössboden" is optimally suited for permanent cultivations such as grassland. They store water as well as nutrients and are significantly more tolerant than other soils. With decades of experience in hay production, a special grass with a high proportion of timothy is grown here.


Thanks to our automated hay drying, the hay can be brought in for drying within 24 hours with a residual moisture of 40% - 50% unpressed with a loading truck. In contrast, this process takes 96 - 144 hours for traditional-dried hay. This means that there is no moulding of the hay due to overnight moisture. The grass is brought loosely into the boxes with a crane. A special programme with high ventilation support ensures careful warming, dehumidification and drying of our hay within the next 7 days.

Benefits in contrast to traditional hay drying:

  1. Rich green colour

  2. Independence from weather conditions

  3. Low crumb loss

  4. Low dust

  5. Rich in nutrients and vitamins

  6.  No moulding/post fermentation

  7. More aromatic

As the hay has to be turned more often when dried traditionally by sun and wind, many nutrients are lost (seeds fall out, high crumble losses, etc.). If the hay is dried mechanically, the nutrients are preserved because the hay is already brought in with a residual moisture. After drying, no more faulty fermentation or reheating takes place. The removal of water deprives bacteria and fungi of their basis of life and thus maintains the forage quality for several months. The hay retains its aromatic smell, a more intense taste and a deep green colour.


In 2017, the Chamber of Agriculture in NRW examined 23 hay samples. Only just under 40% of the samples contained a harmless germ content for horses. In other words, 60% of the hay samples were unsuitable for horses. According to Virbac, a renowned French company in the field of veterinary medicine, about 4 out of 100 horses suffer from colic per year - making it the most common emergency in equine practice. Since many colics are caused by poor quality hay (mould, fermentation) or incorrect feeding (too much at once, too little roughage), the horse owner can make a crucial contribution to prevention.

This is exactly where we come in at HAYRECA.
We want to offer hay that can be fed safely. We supply our Black Forest hay exclusively hot-air dried and in compliance with the highest quality requirements in quality levels I and II (LUFA-Keimzahlstufen). After the drying process, a sample is taken and sent to the LTZ, which puts our hay through its paces. The results from the analyses are representative for the whole batch of one season (= e.g. the 1st cut / season 2021). 

Since the quality of hay is subject to natural and uncontrollable variations of Mother Nature, these factors do not constitute grounds for complaint. If, despite our quality concept, you receive hay that has unacceptable defects, please contact us directly (on or immediately after delivery).