Midwest dairy farmers continued to enjoy strong profits in June, though they were down a $1/cwt compared to May, reports Robert Tigner, a Nebraska Extension dairy educator.
"Profitability has eroded from the previous month, down $1.01 per cwt for the freestall 20,000 pound budget," he says. "Income declined per cow by $216 while feed costs declined by only $19."
Tigner’s budgets are based on market prices for feed, milk and cull cows. For June, he pegged in $4.45/bu corn; $446/ton soybean meal and $225/ton hay. Milk prices were plugged in at $23.39/cwt and cull cows were valued at $101/cwt.
Based on these numbers, the budget breakeven price was $19.40/cwt for freestall herds averaging 20,000 lb./cow and $17.64 for freestall herds averaging 24,000 lb./cow. Total return to management, after labor was paid, was $3.60/cwt for the 20,000 lb. herd and $5.25/cwt for the 24,000 lb. herd.