Dairy farming has grown tremendously in the last couple of years. From being a hobby activity, dairy farming in Kenya has been transformed into a full blown business venture. There are more than enough examples of people making a more than good living from dairy farming but almost all of them will agree with me when I say it requires you to give a lot for you to receive.
There are several things that they all agree should be considered/performed for one to be successful in it.
Many people practicing dairy farming today are not satisfied with the amount of milk the cow is giving them. Especially when there are successful dairy farmers getting 30-45 liters of milk per cow per day. The easiest solution to this would be to buy some of the successful farmers’ cows. This is solving the problem without actually solving the problem. Il explain, if your cow is producing less than 10 liters a day, then you are not feeding it right.
To solve the problem, a farmer should first learn to feed the cows as required before buying high producing cows. Many farmers end up with diminished milk production after spending a lot of money buying quality breeds but fail when it comes to feeding them.
Learn about proper feeding of dairy cows HERE
Having quality breeds helps a lot when it comes to milk productivity. Farmers can get these cows from big farms that sell off heifers. This almost assures you of good milk produce provided you feed the cows right. It is therefore advised that farmers learn as much as possible about the cow when they but it. You wouldn’t want to subject it to totally different conditions to the one it is used to as it may affect production.
To ensure that you gain maximum profits from your dairy venture, make sure you drive the cost of feeds down. Reports have it that the main cost in dairy farming in kenya is from animal feed which accounts to is between 40%-60% of the total costs.
There are several ways in which farmers can drive the costs down for example planting their own food if there is enough land available. Farmers can also make their own concentrates such as dairy meal. This will significantly reduce the cost of farming. There are new technologies that help reduce the cost of feeds for dairy farming in kenya such as hydroponics fodder where fodder is planted without water and is ready in just 6 days.
Every farmer requires good technical support to be successful. Having a qualified vetinary doctor to visit your farm regularly can save you lot of costs amounting from medical expenses. It is also important that a farmer has a nutritionist visit the farm once in a while to advice on the feed to give the cows in the different lactation stages. Soil analysts are also important because if your soil lacks certain nutrients needed for cow development, then the crops grown on it will most likely also lack the same.
There are several dairy farming in kenya youtube videos that i would advice every aspiring dairy farmer to watch including the ones above.
The best way to start dairy farming is to start small and learn before going big. I will post another article with more detailed information.Stay tuned.