Title: Costs and returns in raising dairy heifers, six farms, Orange County, Florida, 1960
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Title: Costs and returns in raising dairy heifers, six farms, Orange County, Florida, 1960
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Creator: Cribbett, Albert Franklin,
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Full Text



'May -l Ag. Econ. Series No, 41-11





4 I


Costs and Returns in Raising Dairy Heifers, -

" Six Farms, Orange County, Florida, 1960 -




by

A. F. Cribbett and R E. L. Greene
Assistant County Agent, Orange County and
Agricultural Economist, Florida Agricultural Experiment Station


Department of Agricultural Economics and
Agricultural Extension Service, Cooperating
Florida Agricultural Experiment Stations
Gainesville, Floffda


-- ~ ~ -


1









;d







1.1









COSTS AND RETURNS FROM RAISING DAIRY HEIFERS ON
SIX DAIRY FARMS IN ORANGE COUNTY, FLORIDA,
1960

TABLE OF CONTENTS

INTRODUCTION . . . .. .. . . . I

SOURCE OF DATA. . . . .. . .. 2

NUMBER OF HEIFERS PER FARM . . . . .... . 3
Equivalent Number of Heifers to 27 Months of Age per Farm . 4
Percent by Breeds of Calves and Yearlings .. .... . 5

COSTS . . . . . . 6
Feed . . a. * * 6
Labor . . . . . . 9
Other Costs . . . . 10
Total Costs . .. . . .10

RETURNS . . . . . . .13
Total Returns . . . . . .13
Net Returns . . . . . . 15

NET COSTS . .. . . . . 15
Death Loss Cost . . . . 16

COMPARISON OF COSTS AND RETURNS ON FOUR LOW COST FARMS WITH AVERAGE
COSTS AND RETURNS OF RAISING HEIFERS . . . .17

SUMMtTI AY . . . . . 20


INTRODUCTION

Raising heifers for herd replacements is an important secondary

enterprise on most dairy farms in Central Florida. Heifers raised accounted

for 36 percent of all herd additions made during 1958, while purchased

replacements accounted for 64 percent. The proportion of replacements

raised on Central Florida dairy farms was 4 percent more in 1958 than in

1949.1/ It has been estimated that 93 percent of all dairy replacements

purchased were imported into Florida from other states.2/


1/Greene, R. E. L., Warrington, John and Brooke, D. L., "Summary of
Costs and Returns for Wholesale Dairy Farms Central Florida, 1958",
Department of Agricultural Economics and Florida Milk Commission,
cooperating, Florida Agricultural Experiment Stations, October 1959.
2/Downen, M. Lloyd, and Culver, David W., "The Dairy Cattle
Replacement Markets of Tennessee and Florida." Tennessee Agricultural
Experiment Station Bulletin 318, September, 1960.






2

Although the proportion of heifers raised increased 4 percent, the

rate of turnover of cows in Central Florida herds was 8 percent more in

1958 than in 1949.1/ The average number of years in the milking herd

decreased from 6.1 years in 1949 to 4.2 years in 1958. The change in rate

of turnover has increased the demand for dairy replacements, both raised

and purchased.

How much does it cost Orange County dairymen to raise a heifer? What

is the relative importance of the various items of cost? How do returns

compare with costs? How does the cost on low cost farms compare with the

average cost of raising a replacement heifer? The purpose of this study

was to provide answers to these and other questions about raising dairy

heifers in Orange County.


SOURCE OF DATA

Information on costs and returns was obtained through a specific,

detailed cost study of the heifer replacement enterprise on six dairy farms

located in various sections of Orange County. Farms studied represented

20 percent of the dairy farms in the county. The six farms were not

selected as a random sample, but on a voluntary cooperator basis.

Data on direct costs were collected through the use of a monthly

reporting form completed by each cooperator for the 12-month period ending

December 31, 1960. Overhead costs were obtained by the survey method in a

personal interview with the farm operators during the final week of the

study year.

The study was designed so the data could be summarized to cover three

age periods during the growth span of a dairy heifer 0 to 6 months, 6 to

15 months, and 15 months of age and older. These groups were selected

because the growth span of a dairy heifer raised in Orange County is

N/Ibid., page 1. Footnote 1.







3

normally divided into three age periods: (1) 0 to 6 months covers the

nursing and post-weaning period; (2) 6 to 15 months includes the puberty

or pre-breeding period and (3) 15 months of age and older embraces the

breeding and pre-calving period. It was the opinion of the investigators

that the information would be more useful if compiled by age periods. Data

for the three age groups were added together to give an estimate of the

cost of raising a heifer to 27 months of age.


NUMBER OF HEIFERS PER FARM

Table 1 shows the average number of heifers per farm at the beginning

of the year, additions and removals during the year, and number on hand at

the end of the year. The table also shows average number based on a 13-

month inventory and percent death loss. Average number--13-month

Table l.--Number of Heifers per Farm by Age Groups, Six Dairy Farms,
Orange County, Florida, 1960.



Item Age Groups
: 0 to 6 : 6 to 15 : 15 months
: months : months : and over
On hand beginning of the year 42.2 53.1 59.0
Additions:
Calves added from herd 79.2 -
Transfers in 63.2 66.8
Purchases 4.2
Total 79.2 63.2 71.0

Removals:
Freshened into herd 67.0
Sales 3.2 7.0 1.8
Transfers out 63.2 66.8 -
Deaths 8.2 4.0 .5
Total 74.6 77.8 69.3

On hand end of year 46.8 38.5 60.7
Average number--13-month inventory 39.3 50.3 66.2
Percent death loss/ 10.4 6.0 .8


./Based on equivalent number raised. See Table 2.






4

inventory--for each age group was calculated by dividing total heifer

months by 13. Number of heifer months was the sum of the inventories

recorded the first day of each reporting month, plus the ending inventory

recorded December 31, 1960. In this study where average number is used it

refers to a 13-month inventory unless otherwise indicated.

Since the records covered a 12-month period, the number of heifers

raised in a group was more than the average number for those groups that

covered less than 12 months. Therefore the average number of animals in

each age group was multiplied by a factor to convert this figure to the

equivalent number of animals raised in a group. The 0 to 6 months average

number was multiplied by 2; the 6 to 15 months average number by 1.333 and

the 15 months and over by 1. The equivalent number was used in calculating

amount and cost per head for the various items. Similar calculations were

made for each farm. The average and equivalent number of heifers per farm

and the range in numbers by age group are shown in Table 2.

Table 2.--Average and Equivalent Number of Heifers per Farm and Range in
in Numbers, Six Dairy Farms, Orange County, Florida, 1960.

Average Number Equivalent Number
Age Groups
: All Range All Range
: farms : Low : High : farms : Low : High
0 to 6 months 39.3 9.6 97.9 78.6 19.2 195.8

6 to 15 months 50.3 13.2 132.0 67.1 17.6 176.0

15 months and over 66.2 23.6 155.2 66.2 23.6 155.2



Equivalent Number of Heifers to 27 Months of Age per Farm

Heifers of all ages are normally found on a farm during any given year.

Calves may be started for herd replacements during each month. However, in

Orange County, more calves are started during late summer and fall than

other seasons due to the annual base re-establishment period.







5

In this study, costs and returns were collected for a 12*month period

for all heifers, according to the age groups previously indicated, Animals

were transferred from one age group to another as their age changed. The

age each heifer was dropped from the study was the day of first calving,

which was at approximately 27 months on the six farms. An equivalent

number of heifers to 27 months of age was calculated by multiplying the

average number for each age group by 12 and dividing the sum by 27; this

gave 69.25 heifers to 27 months of age per farm. (Table 3). A similar

calculation for each farm showed a range of 20.65 to 171.20 heifers to 27

months of age.


Table 3.--Equivalent Number of Heifers per Farm to 27 Months of Age,
Six Dairy Farms, Orange County, Florida, 1960.

:Average number: Number Total
Age Groups per farm : of months months

0 to 6 months 39.3 12 471.6

6 to 15 months 50.3 12 603.6

15 months and over 66.2 12 794.4

Total 1,869.6

Equivalent number of heifers
to 27 months of age 69.25



Net returns were calculated only for heifers to 27 months of age.

Other results are reported on the basis of 0 to 6 months, 6 to 15 months,

15 to 27 months and 0 to 27 months of age.


Percent by Breeds of Calves and Yearlings

Heifers of all five major dairy breeds may be found on many commercial

dairy farms in Orange County. However, animals of Jersey, Guernsey, and

Holstein breeding were the predominate breeds on the six farms studied.










The estimated percent of the various

yearlings were as follows:


6

breeds per farm for calves and


Breed Average Percent per Farm
Calves Yearlings

Jersey 42.40 41.50

Guernsey 22.40 21.83

Holstein 35.16 36.66

Other/ .04 .01

Total 100.00 100.00

1/Included both Ayrshire and Brown Swiss breeding.


COSTS


The different costs of raising heifers were grouped under two major

categories--direct and overhead. Direct costs were those for feed, labor,

veterinary and medicine, supplies and other and breeding fees. Overhead

costs included buildings and improvements, machinery and equipment used

directly, and taxes charged to and interest on investment in heifers. The

value of the heifer calf at birth was not included as a cost in the 0 to 6

months group, but was treated as a debit in figuring total returns for the

heifer enterprise.


Feed

The amount and cost of various items included in total feed costs are

shown in Table 4. In general the six farms followed a similar system of

feeding. Usually calves were fed both whole milk and milk substitutes and

were gradually shifted to a calf starter grain during the 6 to 12 week

nursing period. The post-weaning ration usually consisted of both a grower

grain and a dairy ration. At 6 months of age, heifers were generally

wormed, vaccinated and turned out to pasture in groups according to size.





















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From 6 months to freshening, the heifers were pastured and supplemented

with a dairy ration. Hay was fed, but only when pasture was limited or of

poor quality. In several instances, a protein-mineral mix was fed to

supplement heifers on lighter grain rations.

Including pasture, feed costs averaged $243 per heifer to 27 months of

age. Feed represented 76.9 percent of all costs of raising a heifer. The

average and variations in feed cost and percent feed of total costs for each

age group are shown in Table 5.


Table 5.--Average and Variations in Feed Costs and Percent Feed of Total
Costs, by Age Groups, Six Dairy Farms, Orange County, Florida,
1960.

: Cost of feed per heifer : Percent feed of total costs
Age Groups : All : Range : All : Range
: farms : Low : High : farms : Low : High

0 to 6 months $ 56 $ 47 $ 64 67 56 87
6 to 15 months 69 49 117 80 78 88
15 to 27 months 118 65 193 80 71 84
0 to 27 months 243 189 357 76 73 84



Pasture cost calculations included charges for fertilizer, lime and

seed, labor and machinery used for maintenance, preparation or planting,

and interest on land investment or land rent charge. Interest was calcu-

lated at 6 percent as this was the average rate charged in the area for

long term loans. Land investment was based upon the dairyman's dollar

evaluation of the land for purposes of pasture and forage crop production.

Average number and variations between farms in acres of pasture used per

heifer in various age groups are shown in Table 6.






9

Table 6.--Acres of Pasture per Heifer, by Age Groups, Six Dairy Farms,
Orange County, Florida, 1960.

: : Range
Age Groups : Average : :
: : Low : High

O to 6 months .07 .01 .15
6 to 15 months .32 .08 .44
15 months and over 1.84 .19 2.57
0 to 27 months 2.16 .33 2.98



Labor

Labor costs included charges for hired and other labor- used directly

for daily chores on heifers. To raise a heifer to 27 months of age required

about 26 hours of labor (Table 7). The cost of labor was $35 per heifer but

this figure varied from $11 to $49 for the six farms studied. Cost of labor

was $16 for the 0 to 6 months group, $9 in the 6 to 15 months group and $10

in the 15 months and over group. Labor accounted for 11 percent of the total

cost of raising a heifer. The average rate charged was $1,36 per hour for

hired labor and $1.38 for other labor.

Table 7.--Hours and Costs of Labor Used on Heifers, by Age Groups, Six
Dairy Farms, Orange County, Florida, 1960.

: Age groups
Item : 0 to 6 : 6 to 15 : 15 months: 0 to 27
:months : months : and over : months
Hours of labor per heifer:
Hired 10.4 5.7 6.6 22.7
Other 1.3 .8 1.1 3.2
Total 11.7 6.5 7.7 25.9

Cost of all labor per heifer:
Average $16 $ 9 $10 $35
Range:
Low 5 3 3 11
High 25 11 13 49

Percent labor of total costs:
Average 19 10 7 11
Range:
Low 8 4 2 4
High 30 14 14 17
4/Other labor consisted mainly of operator's time and that of family
labor.






10

Other Costs

Supplies and other costs included such items as nipples, buckets,

cleaning materials, commission charges on sales, registration fees, etc.

Breeding fees were charged according to the local artificial breeding fee

rate or the cost per heifer per year to maintain a breeding bull. Buildings

and improvement costs included maintenance costs on buildings, pens and

lots and charges for utilities used directly by heifers. Machinery and

equipment charges accounted for costs in maintenance and operation of

machinery, pumps and other equipment used directly by heifers. Taxes

included charges both for real property tax and intangible property tax.

Interest on investment in heifers was calculated at 6 percent of the average

inventory value for each age group.


Total Costs

Table 8 shows the distribution of total costs per farm, percent

various items of total costs, average cost per heifer and cost per month per

heifer. Cost of various items varied by age groups partly because of

difference in number of months included. On a percentage basis, feed

accounted for about the same proportion of the total costs in the 6 to 15

months and 15 months and older group. The relative importance of labor as

a cost declined as the animals became older.

The average cost per month was highest for the 0 to 6 months age group

but was only slightly more than the 15 months and older group. On a

proportional basis, feed was of less importance in the younger age group

but other costs were greater. Tax costs increased with each age group,

mainly due to the increased amount of pasture acreage used by the older

heifers.









Table 8.--Total Cost of Raising Heifers per Farm, Percent of Total Costs,
Average Cost per Heifer and Cost per Month per Heifer by Age
Group, Six Dairy Farms, Orange County, Florida, 1960.


Item : Age Groups
: 0 to 6 : 6 to 15 :15 months : 0 to 27
: months : months :and over : months


Total Costs per Farm


Direct:
Feed
Labor
Veterinary and medicine
Breeding fees
Supplies and other
Total

Overhead:
Buildings and improvements
Machinery and equipment
Taxes
Interest on investment in
heifers
Total


Grand Total


$ 4,366
1,276
219


$ 4,656
595
21


148 5
6,009 5,277


$ 151
247
11


113 303
522 541


6,531


5,818


Percent of


Total Costs


Direct:
Feed
Labor
Veterinary and medicine
Breeding fees
Supplies and other
Total

Overhead:
Buildings and improvements
Machinery and equipment
Taxes
Interest on investment in
heifers
Total


100.0 100.0


$7,819
684
17
178
12
8,710


$ 51
137
196

591
975


9,685


$ 16,841
2,555
257
178
165
19,996


1,007
2,038

22,034


66.9
19.4
3.4

2.3
92.0


2.3
3.8
.2

1.7
8.0


80.0
10.2
.4

.1
90.7


.4
2.8
.9

5.2
9.3


80.7
7.1
.2
1.8
.1
89.9


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1.4
2.0

6.1
10.1


76.9
11.2
1.1
.8
.7
90.7


1.0
2.4
1.2

4.7
9.3


Grand Total


100.0 100.0









Table 8.--Continued.


Age Groups
Item : 0 to 6 : 6 to 15 :15 months : 0 to 27
: months : months :and over : months

Average Cost per Heifer

Direct:
Feed $55.54 $ 69,39 $118.11 $243.04
Labor 16.23 8.87 10.33 35.43
Veterinary and medicine 2.78 .31 .26 3.35
Breeding fees 2.69 2.69
Supplies and other 1.88 .07 .18 2.13
Total 76.43 78.64 131.57 286.64

Overhead:
Buildings and improvements $ 1.92 $ .31 $ .77 $ 3.00
Machinery and equipment 3.14 2.45 2.07 7.66
Taxes .14 .77 2.96 3.87
Interest on investment in
heifers 1.44 4.52 8.93 14.89
Total 6.64 8.05 14.73 29.42

Grand Total 83.07 86.69 146.30 316.06

Cost per Month per Heifer

Direct:
Feed $ 9.26 $ 7.71 $ 9.84 $ 9.00
Labor 2.71 .99 .86 1.31
Veterinary and medicine .46 .03 ,02 .12
Breeding fees .22 .10
Supplies and other .31 .01 .02 .08
Total 12.74 8.74 10.96 10.61

Overhead:
Buildings and improvements $ .32 $ .03 $ .06 $ .11
Machinery and equipment .52 .27 .17 ,28
Taxes .02 .09 .25 .14
Interest .24 .50 .74 .55
Total 1.10 .89 1.22 1.08


13.84 9.63


Grand Total


12.18 11.69






13

Breeding fees were an item of cost only in the older age group.

Breeding fees varied significantly per farm ranging from a low of $1.57 per

heifer to a high of $4.79. Breeding costs varied upward as the number of

bulls per farm increased and the frequency of using artificial insemination

increased.

Costs for interest on investment in heifers increased as heifers

advanced from one age group to another. In both the 6 to 15 months and

15 months and older group, interest accounted for more than 50 percent of

the overhead expenses.


RETURNS


Returns from raising heifers were calculated as follows: the sum of

the value of the beginning inventories and the additions (total debits)

were subtracted from the sum of the value of the ending inventories and the

removals (total credits). To this difference was added the value of the

calves produced and miscellaneous income. The sum is called total returns.


Total Returns

The per head valuations used in both the beginning and ending

inventories were based on the dairymen's estimated value per head by age

groups. There was a wide variation in values between farms reflecting

partly differences in quality of animals (Table 9).

Table 9.--Inventory Values of Heifers, by Age Groups, Six Dairy Farms,
Orange County, Florida, 1960.

: Inventory values per head
Age Groups : Beginning : Ending
: All : Range : All : Range
: farms : Low : High : farms : Low : High
0 to 6 months $ 44 $20 $ 65 $ 41 $ 25 $ 65
6 to 15 months 106 35 125 116 35 150
15 months and older 161 75 200 168 125 200







14

The value of calves at birth added from the milking herd was estimated

by adding the on-the-farm market value of day old heifer calves to the

average artificial breeding fee paid (Table 10). The value of heifers at

the time they freshened into the milking herd was based upon the per head

valuation estimated by the farm owner. Value of calves at birth varied

from $10 to $16 per head. Heifers freshening into the herd varied in

estimated value from $240 to $275 per head.

Table O0.--Total Returns from Raising Dairy Heifers, Six Dairy Farms,
Orange County, Florida, 1960.


Item : Number : Value : Total value
: per farm : per head per farm

Beginning inventory:
Under six months 42.2 $ 43.84 $ 1,850
6 to 15 months 53.1 106.18 5,638
15 months and over 59.0 161.05 9,502
Total 154.3 16,990

Additions:
Calves added from herd 79.2 12.34 977
Purchased, all ages 4.2 223.33 938
Total 83.4 1,915

Total Debits 237.7 $18,905

Removals:
Freshened into herd 67.0 265.55 17,792
Sales, all ages 12.0 52.42 629
Deaths, all ages 12.7 -
Total 91.7 18,421

Ending inventory:
Under six months 46.8 41.30 1,933
6 to 15 months 38.5 116.00 4,466
15 months and over 60.7 168.19 10,209
Total 146.0 16,608
Total Credits 237.7 35,029
Other Returns:
Calves produced 301
Miscellaneous income 71

Total Returns 69.25 238.21 16,496







15

Returns per heifer were calculated by dividing the equivalent number

of heifers to 27 months into total returns. Returns per heifer varied from

farm to farm ranging from $190 to $292 per head. The average return was

$238 per head.


Net Returns

In Table 11, net returns per heifer were calculated by subtracting

total returns from total costs. Costs exceeded returns on the average by

$78 per head. Net returns per heifer ranged from -$52 to -$231 per head

on the six farms.


Table ll.--Average Net Returns per Heifer from Raising Dairy Heifers,
Six Dairy Farms, Orange County, Florida, 1960.


Item : Average per heifer

Total Returns $238
Total Costs 316
Net Returns:
Per heifer -78



NET COSTS


The results of the study may be summarized in terms of the net cost

per heifer. The value of the calf at birth added from the milking herd is

removed as a debit to returns and added to the costs of raising an animal.

Returns for calves produced and any miscellaneous income are shown as

credits to obtain the net cost per heifer. The average net cost to raise

a heifer to 27 months of age on all farms was $323 per head (Table 12).

Net cost per heifer varied from $260 to $463 per head on the six farms.







16

Table 12.--Net Cost to Raise A Dairy Heifer to 27 Months of Age, Six
Dairy Farms, Orange County, Florida, 1960.


Item : Average per heifer

Costs:
Value of heifer calf at birth $ 12

Costs of raising 316

Total 328

Credits:
Calves produced and miscellaneous
income _5

Net cost to raise a heifer 323



Death Loss Cost

In addition to items of expenses included in net cost per heifer as

shown in Table 12, an additional amount should be added to cover expenses

due to death loss. This figure would amount to approximately $7 per heifer

entering the herd. Thus, the net cost of a replacement raised was approxi-

mately $330 per head. Death loss cost for each age group of heifers was

calculated by multiplying percent death loss for the group times the direct

cost. This amount was divided by 2 since it was assumed that death loss

would be an average for the period. The average death loss cost per age

group per heifer was as follows:

Age Group Death Loss Cost per Heifer

0 to 6 months $3.97

6 to 15 months 2.36

15 to 27 months .47

Total 6.80

The variations in death loss cost per heifer entering the herd ranged

from $0 to $18.01,







17

COMPARISON OF COSTS AND RETURNS ON FOUR LOW COST FARMS
WITH AVERAGE COSTS AND RETURNS OF RAISING HEIFERS


As indicated on page 15, the net cost to raise a heifer ranged from

$260 to $463. The four farms with the lowest costs had net costs that

ranged only from $260 to $290 per heifer. The data for these farms were

summarized to show how their average compared with the average for all

farms.

For all types of feeds, heifers on all farms were fed higher rates

than on the low cost farms (Table 13). The biggest differences were in

the amount of concentrates and calf starter. With the exception of

receiving more than twice the amount of calf starter, calves in the 0 tb

6 months age group received about the same amount of various feed. In the

6 to 15 months group, heifers on low cost farms received 293 pounds less

concentrates than the average for all farms; in the older group, the

difference was 1080 pounds. Thus, from 0 to 27 months of age, heifers on

low cost farms received 1428 pounds less of concentrates than the amount

fed on all farms. There was also a difference of .39 acre of pasture

per heifer.

Hired and other labor used directly to do chores amounted to 21 hours

per heifer on the four low cost farms compared to an average of 26 hours

per heifer on all farms.

The total gross costs of raising a heifer on the low cost farms was

$58 less than on all farms (Table 14). The main factor contributing to

the difference in cost was feed which was $43 per head less on low cost

farms. Cost of labor was $6 less. These two items accounted for $49 of

the $58 difference between the two groups. Total costs per heifer were

higher for each age group but the greatest differences were in the older

age groups. Cost for this group of $146 was almost one-third more than

that on the low cost farms.

















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20

Although feed and labor accounted for most of the difference in the

cost of raising a heifer on the low cost farms compared to all farms,

relatively all costs changed about the same. The data below show that on

both groups of farms, the major items of costs accounted for about the same

percentage of the total costs. The percent that major items were of gross

costs was as follows:
Percent of Total Costs for Heifers
Item 0 to 27 Months of Age
Low Cost Farms All Farms
Feed 77.6 76.9
Labor 11.3 11.2
Interest on investment in
heifers 4.7 4.7
Other costs 6.4 7.2
Total 100.0 100.0

Total returns on heifers on the four low cost farms were $195 compared

to $238 for all farms. Net returns were -$63 and -$78 for the two groups,

respectively. Net cost per heifer was $269 on the low cost farms and $323

on all farms. Including a cost for death loss, the net cost of a heifer in

the herd was approximately $277 on the low cost farms compared to an

average cost of $330 for all farms.

SUMMARY

Raising heifers for herd replacements is an important secondary enter-

prise on most dairy farms in Central Florida. To obtain some definite

information on the cost of raising heifers and the relative importance of

the various items of cost, a detailed cost study was made of the heifer

replacement enterprise on six farms in Orange County. This study covered

the 1960 calendar year. The six farms represented 20 percent of the com-

mercial dairy farms in Orange County. They were selected on a voluntary

cooperator basis rather than as a random sample.

The study was designed so the data could be summarized by age groups

as well as an estimate of the cost of a heifer to 27 months of age. The

age groups were 0 to 6 months, 6 to 15 months, 15 months to 27 months and







21

0 to 27 months. Total returns, net returns and net costs were calculated

only for heifers to 27 months of age. The equivalent number of heifers to

27 months of age was 69.25 for the six farms studied.

Gross costs averaged $83 per heifer for the 0 to 6 months age group;

$87 for the 6 to 15 months; $146 for the 15 to 27 months; and $316 to raise

a heifer from birth to 27 months. For the latter group, feed represented

77 and labor 11 percent of the gross cost. On the four farms with the

lowest costs, the gross cost of raising a heifer from 0 to 27 months of

age was $258.

Total returns averaged $238 per heifer. At the time of freshening

into the milking herd, heifers were valued at $266. Net returns per heifer

were -$78. On each of the six farms studied, the value of the heifer when

she entered the herd was less than what it cost to raise her. The total

returns per heifer on the four low cost farms were $195; net returns

were -$63.

The value at birth placed on the heifers raised was $12 per head.

Including the value at birth and a credit of $5 per head for the value of

the first calf produced and miscellaneous income, the net cost of raising

a heifer was $323. To this figure a cost of $7 per head needs to be added

to cover death loss. Thus, the net cost for heifers that entered the herd

was approximately $330 per head. This cost on the four low cost farms was

$277 per head.

Each heifer raised required approximately 23 hours of hired labor at

an average rate of $1.36 per hour and 3 hours of other labor valued at

$1.38 per hour. On the four low cost farms it required 21 hours of labor

to raise a heifer to 27 months of age.

A summary of selected items for all farms and the four low cost farms

is given in Table 15.









Table 15.--Summary of Cost and Returns of Raising Dairy Replacement Heifers,
Six Dairy Farms, Orange County, Florida, 1960.

: Averages
Item : All : Four Low
:farms : Cost Farms
Equivalent number of heifers by age
groups per farm:
0 to 6 months 78.6 58.3
6 to 15 months 67.1 49.8
15 months and over 66.2 52.9
Number of heifers to 27 months of age per farm 69.25 53.06

Cost of feed per heifer per farm by age group:

0 to 6 months $ 55.54 $ 53.55
6 to 15 months 69.39 59.94
15 to 27 months 118.11 86.77
0 to 27 months 243.04 200.26

Acres of pasture per heifer to 27 months of age 2.16 1.77

Cost of labor per heifer per farm by age group:

0 to 6 months $ 16.23 $ 12.69
6 to 15 months 8.87 7.43
15 to 27 months 10.33 8.96
0 to 27 months 35.43 29.08

Hours of labor expended per heifer to 27
months of age 25.9 21.1

Total cost of raising heifers per farm by
age group

0 to 6 months $ 83.07 $ 73.24
6 to 15 months 86.69 73.71
15 to 27 months 146.30 111.19
0 to 27 months 316.06 258.14
Average total return per heifer 238.00 195.00

Average net return per heifer -78.00 -63.00
Average net costs per heifer 323.00 269.00
Average death loss cost per heifer entering
the herd 6.80 7.61

Average net cost per heifer including death
loss 329.80 276.61




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