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not reflect current scientific knowledge
or recommendations. These texts
represent the historic publishing
record of the Institute for Food and
Agricultural Sciences and should be
used only to trace the historic work of
the Institute and its staff. Current IFAS
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Cooperative Extension Service.
Copyright 2005, Board of Trustees, University
PRESS BULLETIN 201 . ..... -..,tober 26, 1912
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
AGRICULTURAL EXPERIMENT STATION
FEED COST OF MILK PER GALLON
By John M. Scott
During the year the usual accurate records have been kept of the dairy
herd at the Agricultural Experiment Station. The records include the feed
consumed, and the milk produced. From these items we can reckon the
cost of the milk produced by each cow. By keeping a record of each cow we
can tell at the end of the year whether dairying is a profitable industry
or not. We can also tell the values of the different animals. If any cow
falls below the profit line she should be sold.
Cost of Feed
In figuring the cost of the milk per gallon, the cows were charged with
only the stall feed consumed during the six months' test. No charges were
made for labor.. The feeds were charged at the following prices: bran, $1."":
cottonseed meal, $1.50; and silage $0.20 per hundred. The bran and cotton-
seed meal were mixed by adding one hundred pounds of cottonseed meal to
every two hundred pounds of bran. Each cow consumed about twenty-five
pounds of Japanese-cane silage per day. It is interesting to study these
records and see the possibilities for dairying in Florida.
The value of the milk may be taken at thirty cents per gallon wholesale.
Cost of Milk
There seems to be a common idea that it involves considerable expense
to feed a dairy cow in Florida. However, our records do not bear out thi-
The records for eight cows in' the dairy herd show that the average
cost of feed per cow for one hundred and eighty days was $23.29. The
average yield of milk per cow was 2634 pounds. A gallon of milk weighs
8.6 pounds. The average value of milk produced was $91.88 per cow, or
$15.31 per month per cow. The average income over cost of feed was
$68.75 per cow, or $11.45 per month per cow. The average cost of feed
to produce a gallon of milk was seven and eight-tenths cents.
Comparison of Cows
Two of the cows used in this test were: three-year-old,' with their first
calves. It should not be expected that these cows would make as good rec-
ords as mature ones. Yet one of these heifers produced milk at a lower
cost for feed eaten than did some of the older cows.
Cow No. 6 produced more milk in one hundred and eighty days than
did any of the other cows. She gave 3246 pounds of milk, or 377.4 gallons.
The smallest yield of milk was produced by cow No. 15, a three-year-old
cow with her ffrst calf. She produced 1975 pounds, or 229.6 gallons. This
shows the great variation in yield of different individual cows. If cow
No. 15 produced enough milk to more than pay for her feed, cow No. 6 must
have returned a good profit. If all of the cows in the, herd had been as
good producers as cow No.. 6, the profits at the end of the year would have
been nearly doubled.
The above figures show that the cost of feed consumed by these cows
was equal to seven and eight-tenths cents per gallon for the milk produced
during six months. To get the cost of the milk produced we must add the
cost of labor, the cost of feed for the remainder of the year, interest on
investment, taxes, and up-keep. We must also take into consideration the
milk produced during the remaining six months of the year.
State papers please copy.