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Miroslav Zahradnik, Jan Pokrivcak and Marian Toth

Review of Agricultural and Applied Economics (RAAE), 2018, vol. 21, issue 2

Abstract: The paper focuses on factors affecting the economics of milk production based on modelling future effects of present managerial decisions. We evaluate a sample Slovak dairy farms from the economic and performance indicator datasets of the National Agricultural and Food Centre – Research institute for animal production Nitra (NPPC-RIAP), referring to semi-intensive dairy farm and typical Holstein dairy farm. The EkonMOD milk decision support tool for dairy farm managers will be used to run various scenarios in heifer replacement strategies. If the average age at first calving (AFC) is reduced from 30 down to 24 months, the dairy could expect additional heifers for potential sale, growth, or culling pressure on the lactating herd. This approach means that in the first two years’ heifer development is emphasized, expenses in feed and management are decreased by 47,520 € per year, and 53,750 € worth of heifers are sold, bringing the total potential income for those two years to 101,270 €. The reduction of AFC in semi-intensive dairy farm in the what-if scenario 1 reduced the number of heifers needed for replacement from 290 to 269 heifers, also having the positive impact on the profitability resulting from these interrelations. In the what-if scenario 2 the AFC remained the same as in what-if scenario 1, meaning that the number of replacements needed was without any change. In the last–different sample farm case scenario presented in this paper, we considered the Holstein dairy farm with 500 productive dairy cows. The reduction in the AFC from 26 to 24 months reduced the number of feeding days in the heifer category by 12 410 feeding days, resulting to the reduction in total costs of at least 22 000 €, in this case.

Keywords: Farm Management; Livestock Production/Industries; Teaching/Communication/Extension/Profession (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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DOI: 10.22004/ag.econ.281200

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