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Virginia Cooperative Extension - Knowledge for the CommonWealth

YEAR END EVALUATION Dairy Pipeline: February 2007

John Welsh
Extension Agent, Rockingham County
(540) 564-3080;


Annual tax preparation time is near, motivating many businesses to make an evaluation of the previous year’s performance. The schedule F review satisfies the government, but often does not provide individuals a good summary of the performance of their operation during the last calendar year.

Success is measured in many ways. For example, my version of a successful milking is one in which no cow defecates in the parlor. It doesn’t happen very often and the cost benefits of it are pretty darn negligible, but it sure makes me happy!

Despite the fact that we are all motivated to milk cows for different reasons, no farm is able to perpetuate itself in an absence of money—which is why the upcoming programs will be of interest to the dairy
• The Dairy Management Institute is a 2 day program that offers an in-depth lookat several financial measures of dairy farm profitability. Financial data derived from the Schedule F form, coupled with the milk check summary and some basic farm records are compiled and analyzed. Participants will receive their analysis along with group averages. All individual herd information will be confidential. Dairy Management Institute will be conducted during the months of February and March.
• The Shenandoah Valley Grazing Dairy Group is presenting an informational meeting on Profit Drivers for Grass Based Dairy Farms on February 14th at Mrs. Rowes (formerly Evers) in Mt Crawford. Neil Lane, a representative with Intelact in Australia will discuss a similar program used in New Zealand to specifically analyze the profitability and efficiency of grazing dairies.

If you are interested in learning more about either of these educational opportunities, contact Tina Horn – VCE Augusta (540) 245-5750 or myself – VCE Rockingham (540) 564-3080.

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