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Dairy Farming Tips
Dairy farms are a lucrative business, and there is always room for growth. You might be working hard to achieve growth, but are you working smart? If you are looking for tips on how to grow your business, you have come to the right place. Here are some Dos and Don’ts dairy business owners can use to expand their business.
1. Assess Your Situation & Do Budgeting
The first thing you should do is assess where you stand financially. Go through your accounts and see your profit margins, expenses, revenues, and other financial metrics. Work out your average income and profits for the past five years. Make a forecast on how much money you will make if you keep going how you are going.
You should think about how much you want to earn in the next year. Then, make changes to your expenses and figure out how much more you have to earn to meet your goals.
2. Setting Small Targets
You will not be able to measure your progress if you have set up only an annual goal. Instead, set up small goals that will ultimately lead you towards the achievement of your yearly goal. Small goals over short periods are easily trackable, and you can make changes if you cannot meet those goals.
3. Feed your cattle a healthy diet
Yes, cattle can indeed survive entirely on grass. However, if you want to maximise milk production, you should focus on the diet of your cows and buffaloes. For example, dairy cows need protein supplements and other foods such as Alfalfa to remain healthy. You can also invest in the hay, silage, and grains to maximise your output. The healthier you keep your cows, the more your business will grow. Work with a nutritionist to make a dietary plan for lactating cows, calves, and older cows. By doing this, you will be ensuring long-term profits. You will also be ensuring that your cows stay healthy and live for a longer time.
4. Focus on health and hygiene
A stitch in time saves nine. Medical care for cattle can be pretty expensive if they get ill. Focusing on the health and hygiene of your cattle can keep future costs on their healthcare. Animal cleanliness is essential as it can help you ensure hygienic milk production. The quality of your output will be better than your competitors.
5.Take your cows out for a walk.
One of the best business growth tips is to take your cattle out for a walk. Research shows that moderate exercise is beneficial for a cow’s health. You can also increase the lifespan of your cattle by taking them out for a walk. Not to mention that walks are better for calves as well. Exercise is not only vital for us, but it is vital for animals as well. It keeps them fit and happy.
6. Invest money into the business
The answer to “How to grow business” is to invest in the business first. You may be tempted to cut down some costs to maximise your profits. However, you have to distinguish between unnecessary expenses and expenses that increase profits—for example, investing in fertiliser and soil treatments to increase the quality of the pasture results in more dairy products and keeps the cows healthy and fit. Be aware of false savings and cut down on unnecessary expenses. Do not cut down on investment that provides you with profits in the long term.
7. A waste management plan
The waste produced by cattle can be quite beneficial for a farm. You should not treat it as waste but manure. You can leverage a double-cropping system to get more feed and use more manure on your farmland. A manure management plan can increase your revenues as well as capital investment.
1. Do not follow a system of one size fits all.
You should not forget that dairy farms are dependent on the biological framework. You have to rely on a cow’s life cycle - it is born, has calves, produces milk, gets old, and then dies. Every stage in a cow’s life has its own set of challenges. You will have to feed cows who are in different life stages according to their situation. You will also have to treat them differently. You cannot follow a system of one size fits all. To learn how to expand your business, you need to understand that the needs and requirements of every cow are different.
Also read: Cattle Feed Manufacturers in India
2. Do not forget to maintain the grass.
The grass that your cows feed on is of significance. Higher-quality grass ensures that the dietary requirements of a cow are met. Therefore, if the grass is not high quality, get to work. Start mowing the grass. Use the cut grass for bale or graze. Then, fertilise and treat the soil, so that good grass grows next time.
3. Do not forget to maintain a steady cash flow.
Revenue and profit are essential. However, many businesses overlook cash flow and are forced to borrow from the market even though they are in profit on paper. Do not provide milk to risky distributors who may default. Make sure that you have alternatives if you are short on cash. Do not depend too much on cash on a single source. To ensure that you know where you stand on cash flow, you can easily use money management apps like Okcredit where you can record your transactions and payment history.
4. Do not provide a mediocre shelter.
Shelter keeps the cattle secure from unfavourable climate conditions such as rain, thunderstorms, and heatwave. If they don’t have proper protection, they might become the victim of the weather. To ensure that your cattle live longer, you need to ensure that they have adequate shelter. It should have proper ventilation. The protection should not be present in a flood-prone area. Try to make the shelter as comfortable as possible.
5. Do not provide low quality milk to anyone.
One of the best business tips you will ever hear is to provide quality products if you are in the service industry. It is a fundamental rule. Your reputation depends on the quality of milk you distribute. Diluting the milk or using additives to increase the quantum of milk can give you short-term profits, but it will harm your business in the long run. For a good quality product, people will be ready to pay even a premium. However, no one wants to shell out money for a substandard product.
6. Don’t forget regular checkups.
Regular checkups of pregnant cows, lactating cows, and calves can reduce your costs in the long run. You might be able to avoid preventable deaths that sometimes occur to cattle. Hire a skilled and experienced veterinary doctor to provide healthcare to your cattle—schedule regular checkups to ensure that your cattle are healthy.
Dairy business owners do not have it easy. To grow their business, they have to overcome numerous hurdles. However, with the proper planning and execution, every dairy owner can grow their business substantially.
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FAQs On Dairy Farming Tips
Q. Is dairy farming profitable?
Ans. Yes, Dairy farming can be immensely profitable. However, you should know that you will require a significant amount of capital to start a dairy business. Moreover, you need some experience in this field to run this business successfully.
Q. What things do I need to know before starting a dairy farm business?
Ans. To start a dairy farm business, you will need the permit of various state and central authorities. Moreover, you will need to buy cattle, build a shelter for them, buy hay, and other investments. It is a long process. However, you will be able to recuperate your costs after some time.
Q. Can I start a dairy farm if I don’t have any experience in the field?
Ans. Yes, you can do that but take some time out to learn about breeding, cow management, manure management, milking cows, weaning, to name a few things. Without having some experience, it will be challenging to operate a dairy farm.
Q. How much land do dairy farmers need?
Ans. You will need some land for shelter. Next, you will need land for cultivating fodder. On average, you should have 1.5-2.0 acres per 10 cows. It will be better to start small and then grow operations with experience.
Q. How can I cut costs to increase profitability?
Ans. You can cut unnecessary costs to increase your profit margin. However, in the quest for profit, do not cut down on necessary expenses such as fertiliser, purchased feed, dietary supplements for cows, etc. These costs give you profits in the long run.