Farmers should be paying extra attention to detail to help mitigate rising costs, according to Laurence Gould.
Taking a step back from the business for 15 minutes a day can help to gain perspective, said consultant Simon Haley.
“For example, as a dairy farm, do you have the right number of cows for your size of holding and do you manage to achieve a profitable yield relative to your system? These might sound like obvious questions, but farming within your means and operating an efficient system might be the key to long-term sustainability,” said Mr Haley.
If a 200-cow herd gave 8,000 litres, the difference between hitting 80% and 100% full contract price for milk through quality and constituents, at an average of 27p/litre, could potentially be worth £86,400.
Changes to small, seemingly insignificant details lessen the impact of the influences over which farmers have no control.
Other factors to consider are:
- Do you receive proactive vet, nutrition and agronomy advice?
- Do you have a planned replacement strategy and what affects your culling rate?
- Do you know the financial effect of using your own machinery compared with using contractors for silage making?
- How successful are you in securing and retaining staff members?
- Plan your business for the year ahead to assess profit, cash demands and where improvements can be made.
- When selling beef or sheep deadweight, make sure correct grades and weights are at an optimum and sell promptly.
- Opportunity cost should be looked at across the whole business – are there any areas of the business where time is being wasted with little or no benefit?