Originally posted by tw0330
I am not a farmer, but do have a large farming family. also my Father in Law raises cattle, goats, chickens, and pigs as a kind of hobby.
Anyways, This past weekend I was helping him with keeping the animals as cool as possible is the heat. every few hours we had to go out and
refill/cool down the water buckets of the animals as well as water down the hogs so they didn't over heat. This was a constant thing all weekend, yet
he doesn't have a lot of animals.
I own a small dairy (bovine and caprine) operation in Missouri and the lack of rainfall here will hit everything soon enough.
Hay isn't growing and since I'm all certified organic I can't pull a fast one with some fertilizers to help maintain the little ground water from dew.
Like my non-organic neighbors. My normal profit margin is 7-10%. Right now I am afraid I might have to take a loss for the first time since year
one. Took a loss in year one made a lot of mistakes.
I know that hay prices are already taking off and will only get worse the if I wait to bid on an order...perhaps I can sell it if I have to later but
I went ahead and paid for half of what I think I'll need for the winter. This may be a hard winter if I have to pay for all my instead of being able
to put up enough of my own.
All these costs have to result in higher prices I'll charge the tank operators who then raise prices to the product makers etc. who will pass it on to
you at the grocery store.
I have two lakes and well water so I can pump all I need/want for misting the ladies. With misting and fanning though my electric bills are triple
The crop farmers around me are already calling in their insurance markers for some plots as burnt and unproductive. My wife's pumpkins (a fire and
forget type crop) are burnt out and probably unrecoverable at this point. Our personal 2 acre garden is doing fine but we have it misted and
shaded... We'll have plenty to can.
I think food prices will be higher than usually this winter too. Stock up now if you can what other investment can you make that will yield 35%-50%
profit in 6 months.
As for the ladies of course while clearly hot they plod on and make milk for all the heat bless their big dumb asses the production hasn't missed a
beat. They spend most of the day in the barn though with the misters - this is entirely their choice though as they free range and come in for
milking pretty much on their own with a few needing motivation. Calving season went well and after I got rid of all the bulls I still have 10
replacements’ I will keep to rotate in next year on the bovine side.
Caprines are much more adaptable and if I thought I could switch to an all caprine operation I would but the market demand in the US for goats milk
(which is a wonderful treat if you've never tried it - please do) so I don't see that happening. They are browsers and love the brush around the farm
they don't eat a lot of grass.
So as an albeit small dairyman's prospective there will be a 25% increase in end unit prices of all dairy products (milk, butter and cheese) at the
stores by mid September once everyone has to pay for their hay bids.
Might go higher if the winter is long or harsh as people will bid low on numbers.
Which is why I went ahead and bought hay not sure if I'll even need it. I usually am self contained I grow what I need - I think I might not be able
to do that this year. Anyway, even if I do I can sell off the hay I bought now at this price to another person later who under estimated his need and
make a little profit for myself to offset some of my loss.
edit on 11/7/2012 by Golf66 because: (no reason given)