LIC national FarmWise manager, Edward Hardie on the decisions dairy farmers need to make now for a good summer.
We have all had to deal with milk quality issues onfarm at some stage in our farming careers — whether it be a freezing point grade or high bulk somatics on the first pick-up or perhaps an antibiotic scare during the season.
It's past mid-September and as calving draws to a close it is time to ensure mating plans are in place.
Thinking back over the last 15 seasons or so, the average dairy herd in New Zealand had a targeted empty rate about the 4% mark. Today, 4% seems unachievable.
Commonly I hear farmers say, "Why bother with low cell count when there are no financial incentives from my dairy company to maintain a low bulk somatic cell count?"