The feed margin performance has remained similar to the last period at the MDF, so let’s compare performance with another farm in the MID. Both have very similar area, stocking rate and grass consumption. The other farm is not spending as much on fertiliser, irrigation water, topping, and renovation, so their current grass price is $150 per tonne DM compared to the MDF’s $184. The MDF is feeding expensive purchased silage whereas the other farm is feeding home-grown silage. Cheaper feed should help the other farm achieve a higher feed margin than the MDF.
However, while the MDF is feeding more expensive feed, it is feeding more as well. Grain intake at the MDF is 6.8 kg, and the other farm is 3.6 kg. Total feed intake at the MDF is 16.4 kg with 1.63 kg MS/cow produced, while the other farm is 13.9 kg with 1.33 kg MS/cow produced.
In the end, the MDF is slightly ahead on feed margin performance. It is achieving its margin, with expensive feed, because of higher feed efficiency, caused by higher intake per cow. This is a good trajectory to be on, as to improve margins further, the MDF only needs to increase the supply of home-grown feed.
There are two ways to “skin the dairy cat”: cheap feed or high feed efficiency. The trick is to get both.
Note that “feed cost/kg MS” is much higher for the MDF, showing that this is not a reliable indicator to watch.
The cows are now in Paddock 5. It is a stunning paddock, recently sown to Matrix (a roterra cultivation), has plenty of N, under fixed sprays, 33 days rest, and growing close to 50 kg DM per hectare per day. Not bad for April.
|FEED MARGIN PERFORMANCE||MDF TEN DAYS AGO||MDF THIS TEN DAYS||ANOTHER MID FARM||Units|
|Ten days to date:||10-Apr-20||20-Apr-20||20-Apr-20|
|Milker graze area||72||73||77||Ha|
|Average graze rest time||33||34||36||Days|
|Estm’d pasture consmp’n||28||28||27||kg DM/ha/day|
|Pasture consum’d per cow||7.6||7.9||7.9||kg DM/cow/day|
|Pasture growing spend||$5.08||$5.15||$4.03||$/ha/day|
|Estm’d pasture price||$183||$184||$150||$/T DM|
|Conc (incl additives)supp fed/cow||6.8||6.8||3.6||kg DM/cow/day|
|Conc (incl additives)supp avg price||$492||$492||$507||$/T DM|
|Hay/silage supp fed/cow||3.1||2.5||3.2||kg DM/cow/day|
|Hay/silage supp price||$471||$471||$189||$/T DM|
|Feed Conversion Efficiency||94||96||91||kg MS/tonne DM|
|Total feed intake/cow||16.6||16.4||13.9||kg DM/cow/day|
|NDF Fibre in diet||31.0%||30.6%||33.5%||% NDF|
|Milk Solids per cow||1.65||1.63||1.33||kg/cow/day|
|Milk price (less levies)/kg MS||$7.59||$7.53||$7.42||$/kg MS|
|Milk price (less levies)/litre||$0.63||$0.66||$0.65||$ per litre|
|All feed cost/cow||$6.16||$5.93||$3.60||$/cow/day|
|Margin over all Feed/cow||$6.33||$6.37||$6.26||$/cow/day|
|MOAF /ha /day||$23.02||$22.70||$21.39||$/ha/day|
|Farm MOAF per DAY||$1,658||$1,657||$1,647||$/day|
|Feed cost $/kg MS||$3.63||$3.63||$2.71||$/ kg MS|