LR - Backoffice, LR - Milieu, Wageningen UR Livestock Research
European Grassland Federation EGF
Grazing affects people, planet and profit. In general, the farmer's income will be higher when grazing of dairy cows is applied. We studied the economic effects of grazing for situations where we expect that grazing is difficult to apply. These situations could result in lower incomes for grazing. Farms with automatic milking systems, a small grazing surface, a large herd and/or a high milk yield per cow were studied. For the situations with automatic milking systems, large herds and high milk yields per cow, the farmer's income remained the highest for grazing. The difference between grazing and zero-grazing, however, was smaller than for farm situations without restrictions. In situations with more than 10 dairy cows ha" grazing surface, zero-grazing was more profitable than grazing. There was a strong relationship between intake of grass in pasture, on a typical farm, and the difference in income between grazing and zero-grazing. The more grass the cows eat in the pasture, the larger the income profit from grazing compared to zero-grazing.