Introduction to top 50 dairy farming tips: Dairy farming is defined as the process of long-term production of milk. It is the process of raising native animals like cows, goats, buffaloes, donkeys, and other livestock and using their milk to feed humans. Dairy farming industry by-products are used for lactating cows and even for non-food purposes, such as paint, high-quality colored print paper, and historically airplane coating.
With increasing public awareness, many farmers are showing more interest in dairy farming. The dairy farming business is lucrative these days and it is an eco-friendly business. You can easily set up this dairy business without any hassle. It is important to have the right dairy farming business plan, before starting a dairy farming business anywhere. Here, we mentioned the top 50 tips to start successful dairy farming.
Guide on top 50 dairy farming tips, dairy species and breeds, land selection tips, proper shelter for dairy farm, purchasing machinery, sanitation and facilities
- The most common dairy animals are cows, goats (good for small farms), or water buffaloes. There are many breeds of dairy in each, and local information is your best way to choose from them. Contact government agencies, university agricultural extension, and established dairy farms and ask for information to help you decide;
- Rule outbreeds that may not thrive in your climate.
- For each generation, divide the annual maintenance cost by the annual milk production to determine the per-unit production cost of milk.
- Take a closer look at the value of the land/property you want to use for dairy farming.
- The potential value of the land (i.e., the potential earnings if you use the land or property for a business other than dairy) and the future value (e.g., the value of the land over the next 5 years) are important for making informed decisions about investing. There are parameters (more specifically on fixed assets such as housing, etc.) in dairy farming.
- You also need to set aside some land for fodder cultivation. One must also assess one’s expectations and try one’s best to understand the scale of the operation rather than the earnings from dairy farming.
- Farming with live animals is a full-time process and many things in life need to be sacrificed. You cannot easily go on vacation with your family unless the caretaker is a skilled and trustworthy person. Similarly, like other businesses, you can’t easily stop working like milking and feeding are daily activities.
Land selection tips
- Farm owners should retain cultivated areas or land to grow fodder crops for livestock. The land area depends mainly on the number of livestock. Usually, 1 acre of land is enough for about 7-10 cows.
- Water and fodder – Both of these things should be plentiful as water helps in the growth of green fodder and fodder further helps in the proper rearing of cattle.
Proper shelter for dairy farm
- Try to keep the area warm and dry to make the cows feel comfortable, and there should be a separate shelter for the pregnant cows with the constant availability of food and water.
- Do not provide mediocre shelter. The construction of a suitable shelter also plays an important role in dairy farming.
- The shelter protects livestock from adverse climate conditions such as rain, thunderstorms, and heatwaves. If they do not have adequate protection, they may be exposed to the weather. To ensure that your cattle survive for a long time, you need to make sure that they have adequate shelter. It should have proper ventilation. There should be no protection in the flooded area.
- Dairy cows are raised for their milk production capacity, which is used to make dairy products.
- The animal shelter is essential for protecting animals from bad weather, providing clean, comfortable accommodation for good animal health, and efficient management. Inadequate and poor planning can result in additional labor charges and increased maintenance costs.
- Adequate housing for animals is aimed at increasing milk production, better use of labor, better animal health, disease control, better care and management of animals resulting in higher quality milk production. The result is a reasonable price and better profitability of the farm.
- The farmer has to choose the appropriate housing system keeping in view the local environment and economic conditions. Minimal investment should be made in animal housing, using locally available materials for building roofs, floors, and walls without compromising animal comfort.
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Tips for before opening any dairy business
- It is important to prepare a dairy business plan before opening any potential business. A plan can be made keeping in mind many factors, the most important of which are market needs.
- The ultimate goal is to serve the customers, so it is worthwhile to study the target area where you want to set up your dairy farm business. Deciding factors include geography, household types, income, location culture, etc. The following choices should be included in the physical plan;
- The type of animal you want to keep, such as cow, buffalo, goat, etc.
- Some dairy animals – 10, 15, 20, etc.
- The facilities you want to include – milking facility, winter facility, accommodation facility, etc.
Tips for planning a profitable dairy business
- The dairy business is profitable provided the person knows what he is doing and how to take care of the livestock.
- Dairy farming requires sufficient resources, capital, and suitable land to keep the required number of cows. This includes growing good-quality fodder, grass, and beans so that the cows can get enough food. You should be prepared to get enough food to feed the cows as needed in winter and dry seasons. In addition to these factors, budgeting plays an important role in planning and growing your dairy profitably.
- Every cow should be fed with essential nutrients, vitamins, and proper nutrition. This helps the farmers to know the amount of fat in the milk and if it is less than required then it means that the cow is suffering from malnutrition. In this way, farmers can increase the feed of cattle to increase the quality of milk.
- When deciding to raise a dairy farm, you need to have good skills in handling dairy cows, regardless of the number. Experienced dairy farmers or livestock extension personnel can gain knowledge and experience by working with them. This effort can help you avoid costly mistakes and losses while making your project profitable in dairy farming.
- Take the advice of professionals – It is advisable to consult and consult with experienced people in this field. They can give you an idea of the business plans and help you set up your business. Try looking at other dairy farms to see how they are doing business. Look at the plus and minus points of each specific form when making this type of particular farm. As you build your business, this experience will help you. When meeting others, they try to get as much information as possible about veterinarians, nutritionists, investors, bankers, etc. from these experienced people.
Think about the initial investment
- Dairy farming is a big investment business. The necessities are land, buildings, cows, and some other things. If you are in a rural area or an agricultural family then there is no need to worry about cow shed or fodder. In the initial stage, many farmers prefer to buy cows by investing money and they choose the option of renting the farm and land required. As the business grows and settles, you can buy your land for farming. Bank loans are available for farmers to start their agro-based industries.
Tips for various facilities required for dairy farming business
- Feed and manure storage room
- Irrigation system for pasture
- Milking store
- Shelter from the weather
- Sterile facility for milk storage and pasteurizing purpose
- Other related machinery and equipment
Further, business owners need to obtain licenses, permits, and permits from the relevant authorities. In special cases such as illness, vaccines, etc., a special license is required to move animals from one place to another.
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Tips to look for selecting a good dairy breed
- Choose a cow with a history of high milk production. For a heifer, use the records of her parents, grandparents, or other relatives. A good udder is essential for high milk production. Look for wide but medium-sized teats that do not sag. The teats that point down and are evenly spaced make milking easier. Strong legs and feet enable the cow to feed and walk comfortably, especially when pregnant.
- Choose a cow whose legs are straight but separate when viewed from behind or in front. When viewed from the side, the rear legs are slightly curved while the front legs are straight.
- Avoid choosing too much beef. A good dairy cow is lean and has a long wedge shape that enables it to convert more food into milk.
- Choose a cow from a family that has a history of getting pregnant easily during pregnancy. Choose cows that give birth easily. Find a cow with a calm demeanor as it is easier to handle and milk.
Good selection for dairy breeds
- The dairy farming business plan includes a good selection of dairy breeds as it will help make dairy farming a success.
- Choose a breed of dairy cow/cattle that meet the climatic conditions as well as high milking capacity. You can visit the local farms, and you can proceed to observe the different breeds. Holstein Frisian cross breed with Indian Sahiwal or Red Sindhi jersey or Sahiwal jersey is in high demand due to its good milk production capacity. You need to choose a breed that is capable of producing 20 to 25 liters per day. Cross-breeding with high-yielding breeds plays a key role in abortion.
- Dairy cows are bred for their milk-producing ability to make dairy products. Before choosing a dairy breed, it is important to know the tastes and methods of the market or the city in which you plan to start your dairy farm. There are several breeds of buffalo such as Murrah, Surti, Jaffarabadi, and popular breeds of cows like Gir, Sahiwal, Red Sindhi, Tharpakar. Western breeds such as Holstein Friesian, Brown Swiss, Jersey are mostly used for meat production.
- Choice of good quality breed – An important point during dairy farming is the selection of animals whose breed characteristics are good. This approach is primarily for farmers who want to engage in commercial dairy farming.
- Choose animals that show real breed characters. The main concern in this standard is the important production points such as feeding and fertility. Crossbreed Holstein Friesians, for example, have a higher feeding capacity and better milking capacity than other breeds, but require a high-quality balanced diet and fodder, and if reared. When people cannot meet their needs, they end up in deficit due to low production and at the same time due to unbalanced diet, diseases which require a longer time to recover.
- The purchase of animals will determine the quality of the milk produced by decisions about the different breeds of dairy animals and the types of animals. The following are some of the preferred breeds of animals;
- Cows – Cross-bred cows and exotic breeds with Jersey Bull, Brown Swiss, Holstein Friesian, Sahiwal herd
- Buffaloes – Mehsana, Elite buffaloes, Murrah, Nil-Ravi
- Goats – Jamnapari, Boer Goat, Barbari
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- The machinery required for the dairy farming business depends on the size of your dairy farm. The equipment required for the dairy farm is divided into two broad categories;
- Milk Processing Equipment is Pasteurizers, Homogenizers, and Tanks, Separators, Milking Machines.
- Farm equipment – Fodder truck, tractor implements, pressure washer, generator, mud pump, fodder blocking machine, fodder compacting press, milking cans, loader tractor, feed grinder, etc.
The number of animals to start dairy farming
- An average farm family that wants to as a specialized profession can start with about 20 dairy animals initially, preferably 10 cross-bred cows and 10 Buffaloes. Such a farm unit would provide full-time employment to two workers and generate enough income to support a middle-class family. Further construction of modern animal housing facilities, mechanical fodder chaffing, machine feeding, milk cooling, and other infrastructure will be put to better use and if the farm size consists of at least 20 dairy cows. The farm size can be gradually increased from 25 cows and 25 buffaloes to 50 or more animals as the farmer is stable in dairy.
- Large dairy farms with 100 to 200 high-quality crossbred cows and similarly high breed cows. The buffaloes and gradually increase the size of the farm as needed. It would be wise to start small because a large number of animals with the desired productivity level may not be available at the same time or maybe difficult to obtain. In addition, farm-breed cows will always have better producers than purchased cows.
Feeding tips for dairy farming
- Giving healthy food to your cattle is an important element in successful dairy farming. Yes, cattle can survive on grass. However, if you want to maximize milk production, you should pay attention to your cow and buffalo diet. For example, dairy cows need protein supplements and other foods such as alfalfa to stay healthy. You can also invest in grass, silage, and grains to maximize your production. Work with a nutritionist to create a diet plan for dairy cows, calves, and older cows. By doing so, you will ensure long-term profits. You will also make sure that your cows are healthy and live longer.
- Dietary requirements – Although cows eat mostly grass, they are also given man-made supplements to produce nutritious milk. In general, cows survive on grass, however, due to the recent decline in agricultural production, they rely on artificially supplemented supplements. Cows need a lot of nutrients to stay healthy. Dairy cows that produce more milk require more protein, such as mixed-grass legumes, alfalfa, and other protein supplements. They also need salt and minerals. Keeping them energetic and healthy is important to grow a dairy business. Here are some options for feeding cows;
- Hay – This is a great option for those who can’t spend on alfalfa which is expensive. Oats and wheat hay are cheap, and they are also a good option to meet the additional needs of cows.
- Silage – This is a very common option that farmers choose to feed their cows. This is a high-quality feed for cows, and some options include silo, haylage, and others.
- Grains – Grains meet the nutritional needs of cows. It is the most energy-efficient food with high nutritional value. Although cows naturally eat grains in forest or field lands, it is important to meet the required quantity which farmers should pay attention to meet by providing extra grains.
- The feeding needs of dairy animals are of two kinds;
- The need for care, which is the food that animals need to live a healthy life, and
- The need to produce milk, which is needed during lactation. The type of food required. Animal feeds include roughage, which consists mostly of fiber, and concentrates, which are low in fiber and relatively high in protein and other nutrients. Cattle need a balanced ratio of all nutrients in moderation. In addition to such nutritious foods, some dietary supplements that contain micronutrients promote dairy animal health and milk production.
Cleaning tips for animal sheds
- The easiest and quickest way to clean an animal house is to use tap water freely, to properly remove and dispose of dung and used straw bedding, to provide drainage, to house animals to completely remove liquid waste and urine.
- Daily extraction of leftover fodder and fodder in the manger reduces the bee problem. Periodic water purification eliminates the growth of algae, bacterial and viral contaminants and thus keeps the animal healthy.
Sanitation in dairy farm
- Dairy farmhouses need to be cleaned to eliminate all the microorganisms that can cause disease in animals.
- Milking is an appreciative activity of dairy farming. Milking arrangements cover all aspects of the process of obtaining milk from animals quickly and efficiently while ensuring the health of animals and the quality of milk. Consistent feeding is an important part of good dairy farming practice in the daily implementation of feeding procedures. The best dairy farming methods recommended for cleaning milk are described under the following headings;
- Make sure that the milking routine does not injure the animals or add contaminants to the milk.
- Ensure that the milking process is carried out under hygienic conditions.
- Make sure that the milk is handled properly after milking.
Focus on health and hygiene
- If cattle get sick, their medical care can be very expensive. Paying attention to the health and hygiene of your livestock can help you maintain your healthcare costs. Animal hygiene is important as it can help you ensure healthy milk production. The quality of your products will be better than your competitors.
- It is important to focus on the health status of the cows on your farm, especially during the winter season. The winter season is difficult for them for obvious reasons and if they take a bath they must be dried, otherwise, they will get sick or catch diseases. In addition, keeping cows in good and moderate weight is important to ensure their health. It is recommended to inspect the cow once every two months. It is equally important to maintain the level of body fat, which can be increased or decreased by proper feeding.
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Vaccination tips for dairy animals
- In the dairy industry, before proceeding with any vaccination, pesticides must be applied to achieve beneficial results. Even so, pesticides should be given regularly, and the veterinarian will likely contact you about it. Diseases monitored under the vaccination program include Foot and Mouth Diseases, Theileriosis, Rabies, Brucella, Anthrax, Hemorrhagic Septicemia, and other diseases.
- A good breed of cow should be selected to give more milk. In addition, their caregivers should have a strict vaccination schedule to control diseases and protect the health of cows.
Keep them disease-free and healthy
- It is recommended to have a veterinarian near the farm to ensure easy access and availability. Always vaccinate cattle on time with a veterinarian. To keep them fit, leave them open in a shed, as moving freely will reduce their bloating. If there are more than 100 cows/buffaloes in the dairy farm, it is highly recommended to appoint a doctor on the farm itself.
- Some important tasks before starting a dairy farming business
- Consultation with experts/professionals and market leaders
- Conduct thorough business research
- Plan healthy infrastructure for animals
- Develop feeding and waste management programs
- Getting a license from the relevant authorities
- Getting funds or getting a business loan
- Finalizing your business name
Facilities required for dairy farm
- If you want to raise good quality animals then good quality animal sheds, fodder facilities, water facilities. Many times, dairy farm owners do not pay attention to the daily schedule of dairy farms and always rely on subordinates or give authority to the workers and you will know that such dairy farmers are always in deficit.
Marketing for dairy Farms
- The market is an important factor in dairy farming. If you sell milk to a dairy collection unit you will get less profit but if you sell it directly to consumers with quality (without adding water) then you will capture the market in a short time. It is better to create a dairy farm market on your own than ordinary selling milk to a dairy collection plant.
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