July 5, 2022

 

Cost of keeping dairy cow in Ireland spiked by over US$522, says specialist

 

 

The cost of keeping a dairy cow and replacement unit in Ireland has soared by over €500 (US$522) this year and could increase further next year, Teagasc dairy specialist Patrick Gowing.

 

Speaking on a Teagasc webinar on the subject, he said an analysis last year of production costs for period 2015-2020 showed the cost of keeping a cow had been around €1,000-1,100 (US$1043-1,148) and, over the five-year period, crept up to €1,500 (US$1,565) by 2020 and then took a significant jump in the last two years up to 2022.

 

"We ended up in 2021 with the average cost of keeping a cow and replacement unit of €1,656 (US$1,728) and when we project forward that going to increase by over €500 bring it up to €2,197 (US$2,292).

 

"Fertiliser has taken the biggest jump," he said, adding that meal and other variables are also now increasing.

 

Looking forward to next year, Gowing said it was difficult to make an accurate prediction.

 

"It's very hard to say, but meal will probably increase further again. We are not sure regarding fertiliser (it is in a dip at the moment) but I can't see it substantially dropping," he said. "We cannot see any reason why the cost of keeping a cow will be less next year."

 

He advised farmers to look at what type of cows they are keeping and what system they are in.

 

"It's costly to keep cows on farms at the moment. Post-2015, an average cow you would have got away with it, meal and fertiliser was relatively cheap, but the squeeze has come on now and we really need to start looking at them," he added.

 

- Farming Independent

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