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Re: It's expensive

Posted: Wed Jun 14, 2017 7:11 am
by Bright Raven
I read the threads on the economics of raising cattle but rarely post. I wonder how many users who don't post such as guests, read these threads and wonder why anyone has cows?
:???:

Re: It's expensive

Posted: Wed Jun 14, 2017 7:19 am
by callmefence
I think in any business while it's important to know what your doing the real key is learning how to make money at it. Two different things.
A person can be quite good at something but never be able to find the money.
It's the thing that typically determines whether they are employers vs employees.

Re: It's expensive

Posted: Wed Jun 14, 2017 7:42 am
by pricefarm
I my give them a try. I have some cows that I have worked yet this spring.

Re: It's expensive

Posted: Wed Jun 14, 2017 7:44 am
by RanchMan90
Bright Raven wrote:I read the threads on the economics of raising cattle but rarely post. I wonder how many users who don't post such as guests, read these threads and wonder why anyone has cows?
:???:

Better for them to learn here than with hard earned dollars. They're gonna have to do it a little different than "everybody else" to capture a profit.

Re: It's expensive

Posted: Wed Jun 14, 2017 9:54 am
by ddd75
i bought nuttin but some baling twine at a yard sale and tobacca sticks to fence my cows in.. runnin them on my neighbors place on my side of the creek.. where he can't use or see!

thats how you make money boys! :lol2: :lol2: :lol2:

Re: It's expensive

Posted: Tue Jun 27, 2017 10:11 am
by Draper
If you'll only expense necessities through the cow, your cost to carry could be comparable as well. Best thing most folks could do is sell all their machinery and invest those funds in fencing and forage.

Re: It's expensive

Posted: Tue Jun 27, 2017 3:23 pm
by farmerjan
Draper, I get your point and even agree to a point. But when it is more rented land, or land that you get for nothing so the owners can get their land use tax breaks, there is no way we are putting money into fences that we aren't guaranteed to have more than that year. Many places come with both pastures that the fences are "wished there" and totally unfenced fields that are used for hay. So many do not have any water. I am not sinking 15,000 into a well and such without a deed in my name. It is figured here through the county extension and ag groups, and talking to many of the graziers here, that the minimum cost to keep a cow is at the low end 275. to high of 500. per head. If you own the land outright, then you still need to expense the taxes and upkeep through the cows. Otherwise, why have the land? Most of our rents run about 10./acre per year when you average them all out. Have a 28 acre place that is 1000 per year and a 90 acre place that is 1000 a year. Several we don't pay for and a couple that we pay 200./month for but they are crossed fenced, waterers, and improvements. Several we get to keep equipment in the barns or sheds.

Thing is there will always be the ones around here that want to own a piece of the country.... buying 20-50 acre "estates" that they have no intention to farm, don't know diddly squat about it and want it kept up so they can "Look out over their land". These we get for nothing and make some okay to pretty decent pasture/native grass hay. Sometimes it may not be worth the fuel but if they are next door to a presently rented farm then there is next to no cost to transport the hay back to the farm. On good years we have left over...on drought years we have been saved from buying expensive hay and been able to make it. We sell enough small square bales of orchardgrass ( 2-3,000) and about 100-150 rolls of hay per year to offset quite a bit of the cost of making the hay to feed ours. There are several graziers here and they do pretty well. One said on a "pasture walk" seminar on his farm that the first thing you need when you get serious about grazing, is a barn full of hay for insurance....and I have never forgotten that. If it dries up as it did in the southeast and in the Texas areas, those dried up pastures can't grow and feed a cow so that hay we are making will keep us going.

Re: It's expensive

Posted: Sat Jul 01, 2017 2:14 pm
by Bigfoot
Another big week in fuel and breakdowns. Been over the same 45 acres about 4 times makin hay. 6 tons of feed, and paid a guy roll 115 rolls. A $175 rural king trip all farm related, but some may not charge it off that way. Oh, and 4 more gallons of grazon next. I wish these guys carrying a pair for $150 a year would put on a clinic. It'd save me money to buy their secret.

Re: It's expensive

Posted: Sat Jul 01, 2017 2:44 pm
by Stocker Steve
Bigfoot wrote:It'd save me money to buy their secret.


Many try to make it up with volume, but that does not work well with a low gross margin.

What part of your operation has the highest gross margin (sales - direct out of pocket costs) per acre?

Re: It's expensive

Posted: Sat Jul 01, 2017 3:09 pm
by Bigfoot
Stocker Steve wrote:
Bigfoot wrote:It'd save me money to buy their secret.


Many try to make it up with volume, but that does not work well with a low gross margin.

What part of your operation has the highest gross margin (sales - direct out of pocket costs) per acre?

Backgrounding by far.

Re: It's expensive

Posted: Sat Jul 01, 2017 6:55 pm
by Stocker Steve
Bigfoot wrote:Many try to make it up with volume, but that does not work well with a low gross margin. What part of your operation has the highest gross margin (sales - direct out of pocket costs) per acre?

Backgrounding by far.[/quote]

Same here.
So why don't we do more back grounding?

Re: It's expensive

Posted: Sat Jul 01, 2017 9:53 pm
by Bigfoot
Stocker Steve wrote:
Bigfoot wrote:Many try to make it up with volume, but that does not work well with a low gross margin. What part of your operation has the highest gross margin (sales - direct out of pocket costs) per acre?

Backgrounding by far.


Same here.
So why don't we do more back grounding?[/quote]

I don't want to tie that much cash up in something. I also don't want to settle that many. 45 is about the max I run at one time. Lotta work. Lotta worry. Have done 70. Way too much work for a one man show that works off the farm.

Re: It's expensive

Posted: Sat Jul 01, 2017 11:39 pm
by Stocker Steve
A one man back grounding yard can wear you down.
Been thinking about how to set things up better, but at some point you need another doer.