Dairy Profit Monitor Trends

Ashley Howlett, Cornell CALS PRO-DAIRY

PRO-DAIRY has released Dairy Profit Monitor (DPM) trend graphs to help farms to benchmark changes in their key production and financial measures over time. The graphs include 37 farms that entered at least nine months of data from July 2016 through June 2017.

  • Pounds of components per cow per day continue to show seasonally lower summer milk production, paired with lower dry matter intakes. Higher component farms are continually above the 6.5 pound threshold, with some close to 7 pounds.
  • The range of net milk price is consistent, however, some premium structures changes among milk buyers has led to a wider range of net milk price beginning in the early 2017.
  • Last year many farms saw positive impacts on feed conversion and income over feed costs from 2015 corn silage quality. As farms have finished feeding that crop, 2016’s forages are likely the cause of the feed conversion dip seen over the last 12 months, with many farms affected by the drought.
  • Feed costs per hundredweight have stayed relatively consistent, however, feed cost per pound of dry matter has declined. The reduction in milk per cow per day has led to a stable feed cost per hundredweight, while price drops and ration changes have caused the cost per pound of feed to decrease. As a result, income over feed costs on a fixed milk price basis remain at a slightly higher level.


While looking through these graphs, the same farm may not always be on the top or bottom for each month. When benchmarking your farm, it’s important to note how you change compared to the average over the 12 months, rather than where you rank. During the course of the year, 104 farms participated in at least one month of data entry in the DPM program. For more information or to enroll, email Ashley Howlett at [email protected].