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  • Feeding Program Economics – Know What You Need to Know

    Feeding Program Economics – Know What You Need to Know

    It’s critical that you regularly evaluate your feeding program. 

    You need to know that what you feed your cows and the additives included in the mix maximize milk output.  It’s also crucial that the cost of the feed and additives to get that output gives you the best bottom line.  Of course, that’s common sense for any business.

    But it’s also crucial to measure the right things for your business when evaluating your feed program.  The different methods use different data as input and tell you different things in the result.

    Take a look at the different measures and find the right ones for your farm.


    Although feed program measures are usually straightforward, this is not always the case. It’s important to determine what you need to know to answer the questions you have about your program.

    You may also need to consider the difficulty of finding the data you need. If it’s too hard or takes too long to find the raw input information, you run the risk of neglecting measurements because of the work involved. As always, be sure to include your nutritionist in discussions about your feed program.

    Are you having difficulties finding a solution to reduce your milk SCC levels? We offer instant, on-farm milk testing to help you take control of your business and implement effective milk quality control. Contact us, or visit our Dairy Health Check page for more information.

    de Ondarza, M. B. (2001, September 20). Nutrition economics. Retrieved January 3, 2017, from Milkproduction.com: http://www.milkproduction.com/Library/Scientific-articles/Nutrition/Nutrition-economics/

    eXtension.org. (2010, July 19). Practical Approaches To Feed Efficiency and Applications on the Farm. Retrieved December 27, 2016, from eXtension.org: http://articles.extension.org/pages/26134/practical-approaches-to-feed-efficiency-and-applications-on-the-farm

    Ishler, V. (2014, June 30). Calculating feed efficiency. Retrieved December 28, 2016, from Progressive Dairyman: http://www.progressivedairy.com/topics/feed-nutrition/calculating-feed-efficiency

    Roenfeldt, S. (2011, January). Use income over feed cost. Retrieved January 3, 2017, from Dairy Herd Management: http://www.dairyherd.com/dairy-herd/features/use-income-over-feed-cost-113989464.html

    About the Author

    Anna Schwanke is an undergraduate student at the University of Guelph, Ontario. She is responsible for researching and writing about a wide variety of topics related to dairy cow welfare and management for Dairy Quality Inc. The 10 years she spent living in Australia, as well as her love of travelling, give her a firsthand viewpoint of issues facing the international dairy community. She plans to graduate from the University’s College of Physical & Engineering Science in 2019 and pursue a career in the Life Sciences or Agriculture industry.

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