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Cost of keeping a cow

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herofan

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I didn’t want to hijack another thread, so I thought I would address my question here. In another thread, it was mentioned that if a cow loses a calf, one might as well sell her because all profit is gone, and it was mentioned that it would cost $1100 to keep a cow two years, which would be $550 a year.

I assume that is an average figure that has been calculated at some point, but it doesn’t take that much per cow at my house. What goes into that figure? Is it items directly related to the cow, like hay, feed, and mineral, or is it overall farm expenses divided by the number of cows?
 

herofan

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TennesseeTuxedo":386rrhem said:
herofan":386rrhem said:
TennesseeTuxedo":386rrhem said:
I'm looking forward to this thread.
:pop:

How about getting the ball rolling?

Okay, I think $550 is pretty high but but every operation is different.

That sounds reasonable. I will certainly accept that.
 

herofan

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TennesseeTuxedo":2me65sm2 said:
Our cattle pay the property taxes but I don't count that against them because the taxes would exist without the cattle and would be higher as well.

Our land is paid for so no debt service to account for either.

Same with me.
 

plumber_greg

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There is a billon answers to that.
Cost of business is different for everyone.
My farm and cows are paid for, mostly from other sources, which makes my return on my investment different from others.
No interest on my investment makes a big difference.
Is my $40,000 machine shed, raising my chicken, quail, and pheasants, storing my tractor and the little machinery I own charged to my cows, or to my plumbing business? Or maybe it should be charged to my salary. It's all a tax deduction, charged to the most desirable spot for me.
I'm a money person. What does it cost to get more?
My cows and farm are a tax write off. Write offs don't mean I want to lose money. It means I want deprecation to lower my tax hit.
My cost has to be calculated including the tax implications.
My accountant says my cost of the cows is $230 per head of calves sold.
Most people can't raise a calf for that. But for me, that is the cost.
That's why most cow herds is the U.S are less than 30 head
 

herofan

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I run a fairly sleepy, bare-bones, no debt, no frills cow/calf operation of around 20; $230 sounds a lot closer to what it would cost me.
 

Bigfoot

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If you just want to reduce it to its simplest terms:
$40 in mineral
4-6 rolls of hay at $40-------$160-240
$8 ivomec
$15 in fuel


That's not representative of all the expenses though. The receipts I collected on this little place last year, would fill a #9 wash tub. That's were the expense is, and that's what most people forget about.
 

TennesseeTuxedo

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Bigfoot":1sw23ece said:
If you just want to reduce it to its simplest terms:
$40 in mineral
4-6 rolls of hay at $40-------$160-240
$8 ivomec
$15 in fuel


That's not representative of all the expenses though. The receipts I collected on this little place last year, would fill a #9 wash tub. That's were the expense is, and that's what most people forget about.

I agree with 4-6 rolls but I'm buying it all day at $25 per.
 

herofan

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TennesseeTuxedo":9l8vfkwf said:
Bigfoot":9l8vfkwf said:
If you just want to reduce it to its simplest terms:
$40 in mineral
4-6 rolls of hay at $40-------$160-240
$8 ivomec
$15 in fuel


That's not representative of all the expenses though. The receipts I collected on this little place last year, would fill a #9 wash tub. That's were the expense is, and that's what most people forget about.

I agree with 4-6 rolls but I'm buying it all day at $25 per.

We do our own hay for around $25. That includes fertilize and everything.
 

Caustic Burno

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You can't roll hay for 25 dollars a roll
By the time you figure fuel,maintenance, fertilizer and equipment you be lucky to come in at forty bucks a roll.
 

True Grit Farms

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Caustic Burno":11lrt3kx said:
You can't roll hay for 25 dollars a roll
By the time you figure fuel,maintenance, fertilizer and equipment you be lucky to come in at forty bucks a roll.

He can buy it for $25.00 all day long. Look at hay ads on Craigslist and it's readily available up there for that price. Some folks can always get the job done cheaper. I folks that grow great hay with no fertilizer, we can't do that here.
 

Bigfoot

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Then there's expenses like this:

I'm feeding every cow on the place about 6 pounds of feed a day. It works out to about 50 cents per head per day. I start in early February, and quit when I quit feeding hay. I'll feed for 60-75 days. That's $30-37.50 per head per year. That's an expense I could avoid easily. I think my cows go in to spring in better shape, and subsequently breed back better, in turn making me more than $40 per head. Can I prove a radical claim like that---------Not all, but I can take it off my taxes as an expense.

I also spent about $15 an acre last year on weed control. I feel like I grew more grass, and saved myself some hay, and made more hay. Can I prove that radical claim?--------Not at all, but it will go down as an expense.

Those 2 expenses there, are about $75 a head. The average Ky cattle farmer is probably not doing either of those on their cow herd. Am I an innovator, or a fool? I don't know, but I believe in the end, I run more cows, and the increase in numbers is more profitable.

My dad buys any old hay they have at the auction, never worms, doesn't vaccinate, and puts salt blocks out in the summer. Bushhogs every 2 or 3 years. He ain't spending much per head, and hauls a lot of calves to town.
 

TennesseeTuxedo

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Caustic Burno":tl0mf04i said:
You can't roll hay for 25 dollars a roll
By the time you figure fuel,maintenance, fertilizer and equipment you be lucky to come in at forty bucks a roll.

Don't tell my hay supplier that because I'd hate for him to cut me off after 3 years of paying $25 a 4x5 roll.
 

Caustic Burno

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True Grit Farms":ygtnbksi said:
Caustic Burno":ygtnbksi said:
You can't roll hay for 25 dollars a roll
By the time you figure fuel,maintenance, fertilizer and equipment you be lucky to come in at forty bucks a roll.

He can buy it for $25.00 all day long. Look at hay ads on Craigslist and it's readily available up there for that price. Some folks can always get the job done cheaper. I folks that grow great hay with no fertilizer, we can't do that here.

They are loosing their butt then or on welfare subsidies.
Equipment fuel fertilizer and chemical cost don't vary that much by region.
That Vermeer baler or Krone cutter won't be a hundred bucks different no matter where you buy it.
 
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