Macalister Demo Farm Report-20 Jan 12

The following is a recent farm report and a Tracker analysis showing where the MDF ranks in a group of twenty farmers in the district.

The Macalister Demonstration Farm is milking 290 cows grazing 70 hectares, a stocking rate of 4.1 cows per hectare.  Last year at this time, there were 292 milkers, and the stocking rate was 4.1 cows per hectare.  The daily allocation for last week was one 30th of the grazing area, and the actual grazing rest time was 30 days.

Compared to last week, milk production per cow is up from 1.78 to 1.83 kg milk solids (MS) per cow per day.  Litres per cow per day are up from 25.1 to 25.6.  Milk fat test has risen from 3.73% to 3.75% (fat yield is up from 0.94 to 0.96 kg per cow per day).  The protein test has risen from 3.37% to 3.38% (protein yield is up from 0.84 to 0.87 kg per cow per day).  This time last year, milk production was 22.7 litres, 1.67 kg MS, 0.90 kg fat, and 0.77 kg protein per cow per day.  It is estimated that the cows are each gaining 0.1 kg live weight per day.

The daily pasture consumption from the grazing area is up from 41 to 42 kg dry matter (DM) per hectare per day.  The pasture consumption per cow is up from 10.0 kg to 10.2 DM per cow per day.  This time last year, pasture consumption was 42 kg DM per hectare per day, and 10.2 kg DM per cow per day.

1.2 kg nitrogen element, 0.02 kg potassium, no phosphorus, 3.5 mm irrigation water per hectare per day, some topping, and $0.19 of pasture renovation, all per hectare per day, have contributed to the current pasture consumption.  The daily spend on these pasture inputs is $4.22 per hectare per day, up from $3.92.  Based on those cash inputs only, the consumed pasture price is estimated to be $100 per tonne of dry matter, up from $95.

Supplementary concentrates include crushed wheat, and a wheat-canola-mineral mix totalling 6.7 kg DM per cow per day, at an average price of $306 per DM tonne, and 0.5 kg DM of Palm Kernal.

The Bulk Milk Cell Count has fallen from 110,000 to 82,000.  This time last year the BMCC was 104,000.

The milk price (less compulsory levies) that the MDF anticipates receiving for the week’s milk is $5.12 per kg milk solids, or 36.5 cents per litre.  Milk income per cow per day is up from $9.11 to $9.35, made up of $3.08 for the fat, $6.94 for the protein, and minus 0.67 for the litres.  This time last year milk income per cow per day was $8.74.

Feed cost per cow per day (including pasture and supplements) is up from $3.12 to $3.22 per cow per day, leaving a Margin over All Feed (MOAF) per cow of $6.13, up from $5.99.  The margin over all feed per hectare is $25.39.  The whole farm feed margin is $1,778, up from $1,736 per day.  This time last year the whole farm feed margin was $1,675 per day.

The Tracker project analyses twenty farms in the Macalister Irrigation District.  For the ten day period to Jan 10th, the highest MOAF per cow was $6.38 and the lowest $4.00.  A two dollar difference per cow is a lot of money. Extrapolated to a year (300 day lactation) is $600 per cow, and to a 200 cow herd, $120,000 for the year.  The highest MOAF per hectare was $27.51 and the lowest $15.52.  The highest pasture consumption was 51 kg DM per hectare per day and lowest was 26 kg DM.  The highest milk per cow was 1.95 kg milk solids per cow and the lowest was 1.28 kg.

Frank Tyndall      0409 940 782