PLANNING TO START A DAIRY FARM? Thinking to start a dairy farm?
here are simple considerations:
1) fodder plan
A successful dairy farm MUST have a good plan for quality fodder throughout the year and worth to note to maximize on profit at least 80% of Cows feed must be grown. for instance to minimize on supplementation a farmer may opt to grow maize and leguminous fodder like lucerne, desmodium, sweet potato, calliandra, lupin, sunflower, soya, etc. next step is conservation and space needed.
2) seeking knowledge
Knowledge is power and one of key success of running a profitable dairy farm is having knowledge about ventures, expected challenges, opportunities etc. knowledge can be harvested from attending dairy trainings, seminars and exhibitions, Consultants/professionals, Benchmarking, internet and actively participation on various dairy farming groups. From this a business plan and strategic plan is established.
key consideration is cow comfort and future expansion plan. for farmers in plots consideration of slurry management is paramount.
Its always argued milk will never lack market but this not true as there are externalities. from business plan its captured there is sustainable milk production throughout the year with a well managed farm growth thus good for farmer to establish a sustainable market for milk at a better price and an alternative market in case of excesses. Pulling resources for like minded farmer can establish a mini processor for a niche market. such sustainable markets are institution, hotels and restaurants, directly to households consumers etc shockingly in shelves there are non dairy butter and non dairy creams due to shortage of QUALITY milk.
5) Human resource
Good to have a team that’s well vast on dairy matters even if it means paying for their hands on trainings. Advisable to have prior contract/agreement before starting a dairy farm for staffs. Its good to establish good relation with professionals who will be attending to cows or consult before sourcing cows.
6) sourcing cows
Advisable to tag along consultants/professionals, Agents or experienced dairy farmer while selecting foundation stock so as to have best breed.
with quality feed, dairy knowledge, good management, good foundation breeds and guaranteed milk market with better milk prices a farmer is assured high production with quality milk that in near future will earn premium rates.
The next generation not only is a replacement stock but real appetizing money in waiting.
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