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Maximising return from dairy operation

Ashley Thomas (right) with Sharemilker Mike McCormick.

Maximising return from dairy operation

2003/04 Season

Owners: Ashley Thomas (Owner)
Sharemilker: Mike McCormick
Farm location: Mercer
Farm size: 114 hectares
Herd size: 420 cows

Buying his Mercer dairy unit from the family three seasons ago Ashley Thomas knew production had to jump to be viable for him and a sharemilker. "I had enough on my plate with our beef unit up the road, and we were growing maize so it was the best feed option."

The 114 hectare North Waikato farm produced around 45,000 kilograms of milksolids before maize was used. This season it will do 125,000 kilograms of milksolids off 420 cows with 180 on winter milk and 260 on spring calving. Initially maize was fed in the paddock. Now a new feed pad reduces wastage significantly. Combined with maize, split calving ensures better grass management and use of the good winter growth.