Better life, better profit

Better life – better profit 

It is important to realise that reducing costs, such as reduced labour and veterinary assistance thanks to healthier cows, is as important for improving profitability as increasing milk yield is. They both have an effect on the bottom line of a dairy farm. 

Health is closely connected to longevity, fertility and calving ease. Healthy cows are more productive and deliver higher lifetime profits.

When breeding using VikingDefenceTM, you not only improve these three chosen health traits, but also improve other traits at the same time. For example, hoof health for VikingHolstein has a 38% correlation with longevity meaning that as hoof health improves, so too does longevity.

Everything works together

Breeding as a part of the solution

In order to achieve success in improving the health level of your herd, you need to approach the task from many different angles. Breeding and the selection of the best genetics is one of the key parts along with careful planning of feeding and management issues. 
Selection of the right bulls cannot be underestimated. Your investment will pay off, as you will notice steady improvement with each generation of cows. 

The costs of health problems and the importance of breeding for better health

Health problems not only cause pain and distress for dairy cattle, they also have a huge impact on the economics of dairy farms. When talking about how much a certain disease costs, we tend to think mainly of veterinarian and medication expenses, but forget a crucial part - the indirect costs. Some of the indirect costs that can be overlooked include: 

  • Extra time and labour costs
  • Fertility problems 
  • Costs of preventive measures 
  • Lost milk production 
  • Culling costs 
  • Genetic impact from losing the potentially best-performing daughters 
  • Bigger risk of having another disease
The prevalence of different health problems varies widely from farm to farm. No matter what production system you use, or what your current management level is, you can achieve greater efficiency and reduce your costs by breeding for stronger resistance to diseases. Once you do so, you can focus more on management strategies to improve your dairy business. Healthier cows mean a better life for you and your herd.
Source: Compiled based on data from Wilshire et al., 2009; Overton et al., 2014 and the article in Progressive Dairyman "The cost of subclinical ketosis" by Jessica A.A. McArt and Daryl V. Nydam, published on 24 February 2015