How to cut milk costs by 10p/litre

10 January 1997

How to cut milk costs by 10p/litre

DAIRY producers can reduce milk production costs by 10p/litre, according to the Kinghay Farming Trusts latest report, Profitable Milk, the real costs a litre.

Supported by the Royal Bath and West of England Society, the report analyses production costs of 400 Kingshay members. Average herd size was 128 cows and milk yield 6119 litres a cow.

Average milk production cost was 18.7p/litre before quota, with purchased feed and labour accounting for half of that total.

"Most profitable herds tended to have higher milk yields and quality, and make more efficient use of forage and concentrates," says author Richard Simpson. These herds also had more cows a person, a tighter calving pattern, less than 20% replacement rate, and a higher stocking rate.

The report says farms can reduce labour costs by using well-trained staff, increasing the number of cows a labour unit.

More milk from forage also reduced overall feed costs. Higher yields increased feed costs a litre, but this was offset by spreading labour and overhead costs over more litres.

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