Not only professional farmers are concerned about whether it is beneficial to keep a cow, but also private gardeners who have a small farm for themselves. The maintenance of these animals is hard work, and before you buy a calf, you want to understand how justified it is. We will try to tell our readers what the purchase of a cow or goby translates into in practice, and whether it is worth professional breeding of cattle.
Factors affecting the cost of maintenance
Before answering the question whether it is advantageous to keep a cow, it is necessary to determine the items of expenditure necessary for growing calves. Before the calf grows up and makes a profit, you need to invest in the following activities:
- hay preparation and storage;
- milking - for cows;
- medical costs.
Each of these activities requires not only control and appropriate qualifications from the herder, but also serious financial investments, especially if it is a large farm.
In small farms, financial investments are not so great, but they may not be justified by a high level if you are mindless about the issues of breeding cows and calves.
For whom breeding cows will do
In the opinion of livestock breeders, breeding bulls for meat or raising cows for milk is a profitable and profitable occupation, but requiring not only serious financial investments, but also a lot of effort. In recent years, a decline in livestock has been recorded in Russia. The reason was not that it became unprofitable to raise livestock. Just this kind of work takes a lot of time and effort, so few people want to do it.
To take care of cattle and get feedback in the form of milk and meat, you need to know a lot. For example, how to take birth, how to raise calves, how to feed cattle. All this suggests that people who have decided to seriously engage in livestock, waiting for a lot of difficulties.
As for profits, it is not a matter of firm profitability that is at the forefront. Rather, the main thing will be whether you see your vocation in animal husbandry, or for you this is only a temporary hobby. With proper organization of work, modern farmers get a good profit, but invest in their work not only time but also soul.
It does not matter whether you are going to open a large farm and breed cows, or you want to buy one or two calves for yourself. Before you realize the idea, you need to calculate how much money will be spent on the maintenance of the cow.
So, for growth and development, the animal must receive: coarse feed (grass or hay), concentrates (bran or grain crops), succulent feed (silage or root crops).
The table shows the approximate cost of these crops and the consumption rate per cow:
Considering, it turns out that the feeding of one cow per year takes 22700-24500 thousand rubles. Of course, you can reduce the cost of feeding, if you bring the cattle to the meadow grazing, and harvest hay yourself. But it is possible to realize this if you keep cattle for yourself and in your herd only a couple of cows and gobies. In a serious farm, feeding costs are inevitable.
Items of additional expenses
To raise an animal, it is not enough to provide it with food. For example, we talked about the fact that feeding can be saved if you graze cows on the field. But, in this case, you have to hire a shepherd. In addition, when you decide to independently stock up large volumes of hay, you will need to hire equipment and equip storage space.
Another item of expenditure will be electricity for lighting pens. In addition, doing dairy production, you will need to invest in gasoline to deliver their products. The cost of the pens themselves is also included in the costs of cattle, but this waste will be one-time.
In order to breed cows and bulls in large quantities, you will need to hire staff, buy inventory and equipment. When keeping multiple heifers, care and feeding will fall entirely on you and your family.
The cost of veterinary services
When calculating the amount in which it costs to keep a cow, it is important not to forget the cost of veterinary services. Even if you keep several cows in a private house and practically don’t spend money on feeding, you feed them in the meadow, you cannot do without the services of a veterinarian.
If you exclude diseases and childbirth, then the standard vaccination and routine inspection will cost you about 5,000-6,000 rubles per year for one animal. Accordingly, with the growth of livestock, this amount will grow. From a certain point, the call of the veterinarian becomes unprofitable, and it is more rational to hire your own veterinarian.
This applies to large farms with tens and hundreds of heads. If you plan to do without a health worker - then this will not work, because you will not be able to sell non-certified milk and meat. To obtain the same quality certificate, you will need a conclusion from the veterinarian.
Case and its cost
In breeding livestock, it is important not to forget about such an item of expenditure as mating. The cost of a bull for mating depends on its breed and pedigree. If you are going to grow purebred bulls for meat, then the services of one bull producer can cost you 10,000-15,000 per year.
Do not be afraid, because such a cost is possible only for bull champions. The price for mating with an ordinary bull-caller averages 2000-3000 rubles per year. This is a small amount if you consider that in the end you will have a new member of the herd, and the productivity of the settled cow will increase.
But, if you are seriously engaged in breeding cows and bulls, it is more logical to purchase a male siren rather than rent it. Exceptions are only those cases when you want to bring "new blood" into an existing herd, or your bull-calves have not yet reached reproductive age.
Implementation: methods and places
To keep the cattle has become profitable, it is necessary to think about the strategy of product sales: meat, milk.
If you want to be engaged not just in breeding livestock, but in selling various products, you need to purchase specialized equipment. For the production of cottage cheese and cream, a separator is needed, and to create a stew - a canning line.
If you are not yet ready to open a private production line, you can sell products in a pure form. This can be done most profitably: in the markets, in stores, by opening your own outlet, in factories, in establishments with their own cooking shop.
Before you make a profit from the sale, you need to invest. So, you need to conclude a contract for the supply, organize a delivery or collect documents for opening your store. All this takes time and money, but in the future will bring a good profit.
Tips for novice farmers: optimize spending
To make your venture profitable, you need to learn to save and plan rationally for spending. Here are some tips to help you create your own farm:
- feed should be purchased in the fall - during this period they are the cheapest, as there are many offers on the market;
- you should not buy crushed cereals - it is expensive, it is more logical to purchase or manufacture a crusher and grind grain on your own;
- bran is rational to buy once a month;
- form a permanent market;
- sell only quality products;
- fatten calves for meat, but do not sell young calves;
- selling calves at a young age (8-10 months) is more profitable than selling calves (2-3 months);
- do not skimp on the equipment.
Especially pay attention to the last point. So, the milking machine can be bought for 18,500 rubles, which will reduce labor costs and free up time for other tasks.
Calculation of profits from the sale of milk
It remains to calculate the profit and deduct the costs in order to conclude: is it profitable to raise calves? We talked about the necessary expenses above, but now let's talk about real profit.
Take a small, only developing farm consisting of five cows. The average yield from such a herd is 65 liters per day. On average, a cow is given 300 days a year. The average cost of milk is 30 rubles. Now we consider:
65 × 300 = 19500 liters - the total yield from the herd for the year.
19,500 × 30 = 585,000 rubles - the income from the sale of milk.
Let us deduct the expenses for feeding, mating, veterinary services and the approximate amount of associated expenses: 585000-24500-6000-15000-30000 = 509500 rubles of net profit for the year.
It turns out that with proper organization of their business, only a farmer can get about 40,000 a month from selling milk - this amount significantly exceeds the average income of a villager.
The benefits of a large farm
I would like to immediately note that if you expect instant profits, breeding cows and bulls is not for you. Real profits from such a business, you will see only a few years. The larger the farm you plan to launch, the larger the investment it will require, and the longer the return will be.
But do not doubt the profitability of this company. If the income from a small herd amounts to 500,000 rubles a year, then, by increasing the herd, you will begin to receive large profits at a distance.
Naturally, to expand your business you will need to invest initial income in the development of the farm. It will require the purchase of livestock, the expansion of pens, the involvement of specialists.
Over time, you will be able to switch from dairy production to meat production, and grow gobies for meat, instead of selling young calves for third-party farms.
While the farm has not expanded, and you can not grow gobies for meat, it is better to sell calves. This can be either a separate line of profit or situational earnings - the sale of "extra" calves. Especially if you start breeding pedigreed animals with passports from the very beginning.
Calves with documents are much more expensive than purebred animals. Of course, this moment should be taken into account from the very beginning and choose popular breeds for breeding. Among dairy cows, the red steppe (180-250 rubles / kg), Ayrshire (120-135 rubles / kg), Holstein (135-170 rubles / kg) and Kholmogory (185 rubles / kg) breeds are especially valued. Among meat products, calves of the following breeds are popular: black and motley (140-150 rubles / kg), Cossack white-headed (115 rubles / kg), Aberdeen-Angus (180 rubles / kg) and Simmental (250 rubles / kg ) breed.
This is only the average cost of heifers and bulls of these breeds. With the right approach and good reputation, you can sell animals at an even better price.
If you already have your own calf raising business, share your experiences with our readers in the comments.
If you are just starting to study this topic, then save yourself this article, make a repost, and use it as a reminder for beginning farmers.