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Thread: No Calves. Milking for 1000 plus days

  1. #1

    Default No Calves. Milking for 1000 plus days

    I hear of a some farms buying 2nd (i think) lactation cows and milking them for 1000 to 1200 days and then selling them for cull prices never to be bred. These cows are brought in from NE United States either springing or fresh and milked till they are not profitable based on feed consumption and overhead. Anybody have any information or thoughts on this style of operation? Could it be a new way for a young guy to get started as less facility cost?

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  2. #2
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    I've known guys who have done that . At least for a while . There's a few who are always buying cows for various reasons around here . Also guys who buy in a swag of heifer calves , rear them up to calving and just milk heifers in their first year ! You would have to be keen?? Another thing I've seen many years ago is buying 3 or 4 year olds empty and dry , getting the vet to check them over and running the bull with them to see what can be achieved . If you only paid $400 for them and put condition on them in the process and got say 50% in calf ??? Just another way to get a few numbers quickly with limited capital . ( this was 20 years ago )

    Of course there's a good chance you end up with BJD and other things but I guess you just have to weigh it up ..

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcf View Post
    I hear of a some farms buying 2nd (i think) lactation cows and milking them for 1000 to 1200 days and then selling them for cull prices never to be bred. These cows are brought in from NE United States either springing or fresh and milked till they are not profitable based on feed consumption and overhead. Anybody have any information or thoughts on this style of operation? Could it be a new way for a young guy to get started as less facility cost?

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    Well you save a Ton of money not worrying about breeding & raising youngstock. Using BGH I could see how you could do this but 1200 days is a stretch without it. But we never liked cows running around in heat all the time.

  4. #4

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    That's probably not a bad plan, except I'd think that you'd need to get them into a typical breeding cycle and just sell all calves. Probably what I'd do if starting out. You can just buy cows for alot less than you can raise the replacement right now, and you got milk right now.

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  5. #5
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    Why not just put a bull with them and cull accordingly? Like cousin it said, there are some very big costs associated with getting cows bred.

  6. #6

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    It is not an ideal business plan in my opinion for the long term if your goal is genetics. If you just want to put milk in the tank then why not eh? It just may be a good way to get started. If you start to breed the top cows after year two and cull the rest. Over a few years you could have developed a good herd. While still buying replacements. Then start raising your own heifers. Any additional input is appreciated. The quota system in Canada here makes it very tough to get going at today's costs.

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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by yongfarmer89 View Post
    That's probably not a bad plan, except I'd think that you'd need to get them into a typical breeding cycle and just sell all calves. Probably what I'd do if starting out. You can just buy cows for alot less than you can raise the replacement right now, and you got milk right now.

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    This would be a better plan. Breed them all to beef semen and you can make a lot of money on the calves.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcf View Post
    It is not an ideal business plan in my opinion for the long term if your goal is genetics. If you just want to put milk in the tank then why not eh? It just may be a good way to get started. If you start to breed the top cows after year two and cull the rest. Over a few years you could have developed a good herd. While still buying replacements. Then start raising your own heifers. Any additional input is appreciated. The quota system in Canada here makes it very tough to get going at today's costs.

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    It is tough to get going anywhere, not just Canada.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcf View Post
    It is not an ideal business plan in my opinion for the long term if your goal is genetics. If you just want to put milk in the tank then why not eh? It just may be a good way to get started. If you start to breed the top cows after year two and cull the rest. Over a few years you could have developed a good herd. While still buying replacements. Then start raising your own heifers. Any additional input is appreciated. The quota system in Canada here makes it very tough to get going at today's costs.

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    A wannbe "big shot" dairymen in the area here NW Washington claims that "Canada government gives out grants to any start up dairy to cover 100% of first 30 cows and appropriate quota". I personally have a very hard time believing him

    In the south side of the Canadian border being a start up dairy just 7 years ago. Obviously feeding a balanced diet but Getting them bred asap is and always has been my best plan of attack for converting lbs of DM into lbs of milk. She only gonna get less efficient the further out she goes in DIM after her peak

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by cpridge View Post
    A wannbe "big shot" dairymen in the area here NW Washington claims that "Canada government gives out grants to any start up dairy to cover 100% of first 30 cows and appropriate quota". I personally have a very hard time believing him

    In the south side of the Canadian border being a start up dairy just 7 years ago. Obviously feeding a balanced diet but Getting them bred asap is and always has been my best plan of attack for converting lbs of DM into lbs of milk. She only gonna get less efficient the further out she goes in DIM after her peak
    Hahaha! I wish they would...it would sure make things easier lol. Started out a year and a half ago with 30 cows...cheque must still be in the mail I guess...


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  11. #11
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    well his rhetoric is that he's gonna move to Ontario. So... maybe I can trade you neighbors. Hahaha!

  12. #12
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    There are "new entrant programs" in every province and they are all a little bit different. The one is Saskatchewan goes like this...

    Start a new farm, buy a minimum of 15 kg of quota on your own (kg of daily butterfat production)
    Saskmilk will grant you 15 kg of quota to use as well.

    This can go up to 20/20, then you can keep using those 20 kg until you accumulate 80 kg, then they start taking it back bit by bit til you're at 100 kg free and clear

    No limit to the number of new entrants each year (some provinces have limits and loooong waiting lists) and we have actually increased the overall number of producers in the province in the last few years. Not by a lot, but at least we have stopped the decline, there are only 170 of us left in the province

    No grants for cows, land, buildings, etc... just quota

  13. #13
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    So in SAE measurement Saskatchewan wil match to about 14-15 holstein's milk assuming 80 lbs/day at a 3.8 fat? Or about 18 -19 jerseys? What does quota sell for up there?

  14. #14

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    Does the sask program not require you to pay back the gifted quota in a certain time? If you stay under 100 kg you never have to repay it? In Alberta we have to pay back the 25 kg starting in year 7 in 5kg increments per year. We are only 10 miles from sask. To bad. Roughly $37000 per kg last month in Alberta.

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  15. #15
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    Quota traded for $31,000 in the November exchange, was just over $32 in the past year. Alberta has been in the high 30's and BC has been over 40 sometimes

    And yes, a good producing herd should be able to achieve over 1kg BF per cow per day, 1.2-1.3 is very achievable. We are right around 1.35 ourselves at the moment
    Last edited by flatlander; 12-01-2017 at 02:26 PM.

  16. #16
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    So I just went and reread the policy, I think I mostly got it right...

    You are not required to pay back the gifted quota, you can use it as long as you produce milk at that facility

    If you go over 80 kg in the first five years, it starts going back to the province. After 5 years, no limits apply....

  17. #17
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    $31,000 CAD for one kg of daily fat?

  18. #18
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    So the 20kg gift is valued just over $600,000 CAD on the shy side of $500,000 in USD. Holy Smokes.

  19. #19
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    That is basically correct. You can mortgage quota if it's paid off, it's that substantial of an asset.

    But the gift quota in the new entrant program is not saleable or transferable. It must stay on that facility. But it is a heck of a lot less debt to worry about for a startup....

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by cpridge View Post
    $31,000 CAD for one kg of daily fat?
    In BC current price is $39,000/ Kg BF it has been as high as $43,000. My cows are currently pruducing just over 1.4 kgs BF/ day. ( 32 kgs x 4.4%BF)
    The BC new entrant program is currently under reno's as they are trying to design a new program. I started Sept 16 on the old program. I was on a wait list for 12 years. I received 14 kgs i bought 5 and they matched with 5 more. Ended up with 24 kgs. I must stay farming for 10 years if i decide to quit before 10 years i forfeit my free quota. After 10 years that quota will be 100% mine to do with as i want.

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