As a farmer, the agricultural productivity and the total outcome of your farm should be a target. However, in this article, we are discussing the 5 best ways to increase your income when dealing with small farm livestock.
Some people must have thought of starting a farm or improving the farm’s revenue, but due to poor agricultural productivity and lack of funds, this seems to be null.
Ways to Improve Farm’s Revenue
There are 5 ways you can save money and make more profit when dealing with your small farm livestock. Now, out of these 5, the very first one that I want you to consider.
And probably one of the most important, we’re going to call this number one after setting up a limited liability corporation, which is something that we’ll talk about it entirely.
Keeping system. If you’re not doing this, you need to start doing this. It doesn’t cost you any money and it’s going to save you a lot of money in the long run.
Now I have a spreadsheet here that I’ve made out of the talks about all the different itemized things that you’ll want to consider with your farm.
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1. Keeping Records
I want you to keep records of all your finances that includes all the money that goes out and all the money that comes in. And I also want you to keep track of all the health records, as far as your animals are concerned.
This will come in handy later on. Basic things like when your animals were born, if you had any animal deaths and what caused them, and then general health information about all of your animals.
Possible questions like;
- How often do I have to warm this animal?
- Is this animal continually sick?
- If the animal has babies, what kind of babies do they have?
- Do they have singles?
- Do I have problems with the babies is the mother not nursing correctly?
- Did I have to assist in delivery?
All of these things play in later on when we get to the other tips, this will help you keep track of where your money is going in and will help you go on in changes that you need to make on your small farm.
Even if you’re not in this for profit, we don’t want you losing your livestock. And doing something that you should be enjoying, which is raising small farm livestock.
If you can do this correctly even when you’re not making money, you’re at least breaking even.
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2. Locating Local Sale Barns in your Area
A sale barn is essentially an auction house where livestock is sold, most people from the public can go to the sale barn, drop off your animal, they will be sold off.
You’ll simply get a check in the mail. Now, they do take a small percentage of the proceeds that they get. But generally speaking, unless you are selling a very specific breed of stock to a specific buyer, you’re going to make the most money hands down by selling your animals through the sale barn.
And why is this? Well, you’re bringing in lots and lots of buyers from different areas and you’re essentially selling your animals through an auction-type of environment.
This helps to drive the price up and you’re going to get the true market price for your livestock. Now, there are other benefits of having the sale barn in mind as well.
This can help you immensely once it’s to comes to selling your livestock. These are as follows. First of all, you can contact your Sale Barn at any time, you can follow up, and see what going prices are in the market.
And it’ll give you a good idea of what you should be asking for your livestock if you should choose to sell them off.
You can also call your local auction house or your sale barn and say, hey I’ve got these animals for sale, do you think it would be a good time to bring them in? Or do I have these animals for sale?
I don’t really know what selling right now. They’ll tell you, they want you to be able to sell. They want you to make as much profit as possible because when you make a profit, they make a profit.
So, they will tell you, if you have Lambs, bring them in at this weight at this time, if you have goats bring them in at this weight added this time.
They will work with you in order to get the most that you can get out of your Livestock.
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3. Purchasing Feed
You may think that going to the classic stores is the best way to get your feed. I can tell you without a doubt 100%, you are paying way too much, especially in regards to grain.
What you need to do, I want you to reach out to local farmers in your area. I want you to reach out to local co-operatives and grain mills.
You can go to a local farmer and buy corn feeds directly from them. I’m using corn as an example, but you can also buy other types of grain.
You can buy oats, all kinds of things. Corn is sold based on the bushel. Generally speaking, the general rule of thumb is if you’re buying from a classic store your pain is about twice as much.
Yes. Twice as much as you should be paying if you were purchasing directly off the grain mill or from a grain elevator.
So of corn, 55 pounds roughly per bushel can go from anywhere from $3 to $4 a bushel and that varies depending on the season and the commodities in the market.
Always reach out to these people. They will deal with small people just like you, you can go to a farmer cooperative or any other place and you can bring plastic garbage cans.
You can bring many bolts containers that have had the tops cut off. You can get grain carts, do all kinds of things. Even, in some cases, you may be able to actually have them delivered to your house.
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4. Learn a Veterinary Work
Nothing set you back as much as having to call the vet to come out to your farm to do, work on your animals. Most of the stuff is available online, you can learn.
Yes, you can. I know some of you are shaking your head, like, I can give shots, I can’t do this. I can’t do that. You really can’t. You can learn, and you should learn how to do your own Veterinary work.
Doing your own Veterinary work is part of the complete process. It’s part of what makes farming fun. It’s part of the challenge of a small farming hobby, farming getting to know your animals, and learning how to take care of them.
It’s less stress on you, it’s less stress on your pocketbook and it’s less stress on the animals. Now, there are, of course, going to be situations where the vet is going to have to come to your house.
I expect you to learn to do hoof trimming, general vaccinations, sniffles things like that, how to deliver a baby, how to bottle feed a baby.
These are all things that you can do. Now, there are things that you’re going to have to call the veterinarian out. Things like pro-lapses, cesarean sections, major traumas or wounds, unexplained deaths on the farm.
You will save tons and tons of time and most importantly money. So I saved the best for last and this is probably the most controversial part of what I’m going to talk to you about today.
5. Taking Culling Actions
What does culling mean? Culling is a term used in the farming industry. That means getting rid of livestock either getting them off of your farm.
This is probably one of the most difficult things to do as a hobby farmer as someone that’s spending a decent amount of time.
Every day with these animals, you get to know them, you get to love them and they’re like your pets. And for me to tell you that you may have to get rid of them that can be a bit of a challenge for you and I appreciate that.
Especially for those of you that are looking to make a profit, this is something that you absolutely have to do. Every year we call and we call hard and what does that mean?
Well, this is reflecting back to all of those records that we have you, keeping what you’re going to find, regardless of how good and animals are supposed to be the pedigree that they come from.
With all of those other qualities, you’re going to find that there are animals on your farms that are essentially a money pit. They are unthrifty, you can’t keep them warm, you’re consistently having issues with them.
Not being able to deliver babies on their own or they don’t want to have anything to do with their babies and you end up having to bottle feed them there.
So many reasons why we would want to get rid of livestock, we can get into confirmation issues with livestock. They may carry a genetic feature that we don’t necessarily like.
For instance, if we get lambs that have humongous front shoulders, we generally don’t keep them humongous front shoulders equates to have.
Main issues with babies getting stuck in needing to get pulled other things like generalized, build of the animal’s demeanor, that is a huge issue on our farm.
If we get animals that ram-kick bite anything like that. They’re gone. So culling animals is extremely difficult but this believe It or not, amongst all the other things that we’ve talked about today is probably the number one factor.
That will help you to save money on your small farm operation. I know it’s difficult, but you need to go through the facts you have gathered above. Every spring, every fall, look at it, determine which animals are not working out for you and you need to get rid of them.
I want you to consider also that you need to do this, an ethical way, do not sell animals that you know, can’t get pregnant to the local farmer down the road as breeding stock. Be honest with people.
If you have an animal that needs to go to the sale barn, it is probably your best option. So again, we covered five basic topics.
All of those paragraphs are broken down into a spreadsheet for you to understand. Feel free to drop your views down our comment section below.