There are many different areas to consider when looking at options to lower milk production or reduce on-farm costs.
With many dairy farms experiencing challenges due to the Coronavirus outbreak, we’ve pulled together our top tips to help mange through the current climate and may also help farmers who are looking to reduce operating costs.
Top tips for managing and feeding dairy cows:
- Reduce protein content e.g. if feeding 20% consider reducing to 16 or 14%
- Don’t stop feeding minerals
- Dry cows off early – beware of unintended consequence of body condition on subsequent calving
- Reduce milking frequency
- Sell calves you don’t intend to keep as replacements or to rear for beef
- Turn cows out to graze to reduce cost of production
- Turn youngstock out – to reduce feed, labour and bedding
- Feed whole milk instead of powder to calves – ensure milk from Johne’s cows is not fed to calves
- Consider postponing weaning when feeding whole milk
- Continue to give fresh cows best care.
How to manage your costs
- Speak to your bank/lender to get payment holidays in place and any extra borrowing set up – make allowance for increased repayments later on.
- Speak to your debtors and creditors and agree a payment plan as soon as possible
- Re-forecast your milk production – use our milk price calculator
- Defer capital expenditure
- Speak to your accountant to see if you can move tax payments
- Apply for any support you may be eligible for – don’t be proud it is there for when you need it
- Consider furlough schemes for staff
- Contact any grant funding bodies to establish if delays can be made to payment and work deadlines
- Hire in machinery for when you actually need it rather than take on loans/HP.