Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


Extra feed equals extra dollars for dairy farmers

12 March 2014

Extra feed equals extra dollars for dairy farmers

With farmgate milk prices at an all-time high, maintaining production for the final months of the season is a priority for dairy farmers, and getting those extra kilos of milk solids means making some good calls around feed.

Low rainfall and drying winds in some parts of the country is slowing grass growth, while in other regions, there has been enough rain to maintain good pasture conditions. Ballance Agri-Nutrients General Manager Sales, Andrew Reid says farmers taking stock of mid-summer feed supplies can look to Ballance for the right advice on nutrient choices to keep herds producing.

“Because we take cover the complete farm nutrients spectrum, we’re in a good position to help farmers use forage and supplementary feed to keep up production. What to use, and when, will all depend on individual farm goals and weather conditions.”

Ballance Science Manager, Aaron Stafford says the “grow your own feed” approach stacks up competitively when conditions are right. Products like SustaiN, which is urea coated with the urease inhibitor AGROTAIN® nitrogen stabiliser, work by reducing ammonia volatilisation, which can be a problem when rainfall does not immediately follow application. An average autumn nitrogen response is around seven kilos of dry matter for every kilogram of nitrogen applied.

“As all farmers know, you need to watch the weather if using standard urea and without 5-10 mm rainfall within 8 hours of application, ammonia volatilisation losses from standard urea can be in excess of 10-15% of the nitrogen applied. We know from our work with AgResearch and Landcare Research that using SustaiN will deliver about 50% reduction in volatilisation loss, relative to standard urea”

Results from Ballance animal nutrition division SealesWinslow’s Tracker™ System shows herds being tracked for production have achieved 60-65% of this season’s targets, but in drier regions where grass growth is reduced there is the risk of falling short of production goals. SealesWinslow Consultant Nutritionist James Hague says rather than focusing on the cost of individual feed, farmers should concern themselves more with margins over feed and forage.

“Working out the cost versus benefit of each individual feed can be tricky as in practice the total diet is just one feed to the cow, so it’s important to get a good handle on what the diet costs per cow per day and offset this against the milk income to find the margin.”

For example:

Per cowStay the sameFeed moreDifference
Milk production(KgMS)1.41.60.2
Milk income (@ $8.65 payout)$12.11$13.28+$1.73
Diet cost (average cost of extra DM = 35 cents)$3.20$3.90+$0.70
Margin$8.91$9.94+$1.03

“If cows are milking at just 0.2 KgMS below their potential for the remaining 100 – 110 days left of the season, the 20-22 KgsMS lost would mean around $180 of income per cow of lost opportunity. For a 350 cow herd that’s $63,000,” says Mr Hague.

Mr Hague and Mr Stafford both advise farmers to look closely at feed plans now, as feed and forage need to work hand in hand for the best results.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

I Sing The Highway Electric: Charge Net NZ To Connect New Zealand

BMW is turning Middle Earth electric after today announcing a substantial contribution to the charging network Charge Net NZ. This landmark partnership will enable Kiwis to drive their electric vehicles (EVs) right across New Zealand through the installation of a fast charging highway stretching from Kaitaia to Invercargill. More>>

ALSO:

Watch This Space: Mahia Rocket Lab Launch Site Officially Opened

Economic Development Minster Steven Joyce today opened New Zealand’s first orbital launch site, Rocket Lab Launch Complex 1, on the Mahia Peninsula on the North Island’s east coast. More>>

Earlier:

Marketing Rocks!
Ig Nobel Award Winners Assess The Personality Of Rocks

A Massey University marketing lecturer has received the 2016 Ig Nobel Prize for economics for a research project that asked university students to describe the “brand personalities” of three rocks. More>>

ALSO:

Nurofen Promotion: Reckitt Benckiser To Plead Guilty To Misleading Ads

Reckitt Benckiser (New Zealand) intends to plead guilty to charges of misleading consumers over the way it promoted a range of Nurofen products, the Commerce Commission says. More>>

ALSO:

Half A Billion Accounts, Including Xtra: Yahoo Confirms Huge Data Breach

The account information may have included names, email addresses, telephone numbers, dates of birth, hashed passwords (the vast majority with bcrypt) and, in some cases, encrypted or unencrypted security questions and answers. More>>

ALSO:

Rural Branches: Westpac To Close 19 Branches, ANZ Looks At 7

Westpac confirms it will close nineteen branches across the country; ANZ closes its Ngaruawahia branch and is consulting on plans to close six more branches; The bank workers union says many of its members are nervous about their futures and asking ... More>>

Interest Rates: RBNZ's Wheeler Keeps OCR At 2%

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler kept the official cash rate at 2 percent and said more easing will be needed to get inflation back within the target band. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news