You've reached the Virginia Cooperative Extension Newsletter Archive. These files cover more than ten years of newsletters posted on our old website (through April/May 2009), and are provided for historical purposes only. As such, they may contain out-of-date references and broken links.

To see our latest newsletters and current information, visit our website at

Newsletter Archive index:

Virginia Cooperative Extension -
 Knowledge for the CommonWealth

Mastitis cost?

Dairy Pipeline: December 1998

Gerald M. (Jerry) Jones
Extension Dairy Scientist, Milk Quality andMilking Management
Virginia Tech

$100 per cow, that's the minimum cost for mastitis. In October, 1998, the DHI average for Virginia was 129 cows, producing 19,705 lbs. of milk with an average somatic cell score of 3.2 at $15.97 per cwt. Using an excel spreadsheet to estimate the impact of SCC on milk yield, the average herd lost a total of $12,972 with $4,622 in reduced milk yield from elevated SCC, $5,084 in lost milk quality premium, and $3,266 in higher replacement-culling costs. This $12,972 loss was when the average herd was compared to a herd whose goal was to produce milk with an average somatic cell score of 2.6 or SCC of 200,000 and culling no more than 3% of the herd because of mastitis. OK, so what's a high SCC costing you?

Visit Virginia Cooperative Extension