information on dairy operation

Discussion in 'Goats' started by pen, Mar 30, 2005.

  1. pen

    pen Well-Known Member

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    n.e. indiana
    Hi, we are thinking of starting a goat dairy operation, and we are wondering how to locate sources that would contract with you for the milk? We have talked to some people in the area (Indiana) and they say there is no place here, some in Michigan and wis. Not sure if there would be any profit if you have to ship it far? We talked with one farm that sells theirs to some people in Michigan,but we are not sure they want more suppliers yet. Would like to hear from some of you who know the pros and cons on this. We are open to any ideas!!!!penny
     
  2. rainedaze

    rainedaze Well-Known Member

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    I too am wondering the same thing. You mentioned Wisconsin which is where I am. If you have any information on milk contracts in Wisconsin I should would love it if you would share that information with me.

    Thanks, Heather
     

  3. AnnaS

    AnnaS Well-Known Member

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    I'm not selling milk but I took some notes at a conference that might be useful:

    Kolb-Lena Watertown WI 262-261-3036 They pay a bonus for winter milk and protein/fat
    Mont Chevre WI 608-762-5878

    I would talk with Daniel Considine, ADGA can put you in touch with him.
     
  4. bethlaf

    bethlaf Homegrown Family

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    indiana might be on a jackson mitchell route, or another route for milking


    http://ag.udel.edu/extension/information/goatmgt/gm-01.htm

    this is a great article it includes break even pricing and anlysis for making the dairy work for you


    you need a lot of goats to make it work !!!
    i know i run a backyard dairy, and it works fine for me, but i still would like to have 4-5 more milking does, and about 4-5 more clients for my milk ,

    when i was preparing to run a small dairy a few years back , sellign to an outfit out of canada i was told i would not be included on a route unless i was milking at least 25 does, which was fine with me, but considering the amount of young does and milking does and does not yet kidded, it worked out that i had about 60-80 does on the farm ..... and i wasnt even selling milk yet ... you need to be prepared for these types of things
    and jsut like any dairy operation , you are tied to the farm ,
    that many goats is full time work

    jsut some things to think about
     
  5. pen

    pen Well-Known Member

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    n.e. indiana
    alot of things to consider, we use the milk now to feed calfs and i am going to make soap and yogurt,but my daughter was thinking of getting bigger,if there is an outlet.
    It sounds like some of you already milk quite a few, we are used to being tied to the farm,so that wont be a problem.
     
  6. allenslabs

    allenslabs Saanen & Boer Breeder

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    How much do you get for your milk when you sell it to a milk operation? I live in IN as well and think there is a definate need for goat milk. A lady I know milked 4 does and made about $100 a month just on them 4. That took care of feed and stuff for them plus some. Neat idea! Man 60-80 goats!! Lordy! And I think 4 is a handful! haha
     
  7. bethlaf

    bethlaf Homegrown Family

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    i currently own 10 goats , 8 does 2 bucks, one is soon to be a wether
    3 does in milk ,
    i make 16.25 a week for milk right now, thats selling it at 5.00 a gallon ,

    they provide the jars, 3 gallons and 1 quart a week , 3 gallons to one family and a quart a week to a 70 something man who had goats as a child, and wants goats milk for his coffee

    i could sell more if i had it , but we need milk for our family too, as soon as i get one or two more does to freshen ( sooon please girls, im waiting)
    i will start to court other customers

    next year i will have more does milking , and will see if i cant get a couple more regular clients, but for now, this is a good start

    i have never had a problem selling my milk from the goats, usually just like now, to one -3 families, covers my expenses on my goats, and makes me feel pretty darn good about it too
     
  8. allenslabs

    allenslabs Saanen & Boer Breeder

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    Man that seems cheap! My grandparents sold goat milk a few years ago and got $10 a gal then. And for a can of milk (you can't buy it fresh at stores here) it's $3.40 for 12 oz. But I don't know how it is in Ar and you don't want to charge too much as you want to be able to sell it and make something. I would be thrilled to get money out of my animals....it would make me feel like I"m contributing something. I know I care for the kids and animals but that my animals would be caring for themselves........
     
  9. Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians

    Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians Well-Known Member

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    North of Houston TX
    Start with realmilk.com selling to another distributor is of course the least money maker for you. Selling milk yourself, be it legal, be it for pet consumption or milk shares, is of course more profitable. Couple it with soap, lotion, cheese (really skirting the law here) and other farm edibles (graden, bees, chickens, herbs) can make your even small acreage farm profitable. Be smart, dont' listen to all those who will tell you it can't work. Find out the laws for yourself, read them yourself.

    Milk a doe who milks 8 pounds a day for 10 months, sell the milk for $6 (live closer to Houston and sell it for $12) a gallon, and a good milker will make $42 a week...make that into cheese and thats over 100$ per week, make that into soap and it's more than that. Put $10 of that back into feed, electricity and thats a very good salary. Times that by 10 good milkers and it's a nice little living. But if you have to milk twice that many, have to rodeo twice a day with wild goats, or have diseased sickly goats, skinny ugly goats, a dirty place, than of course your sales will suffer.

    Locally the cheese plant is buying milk at just over $2 a gallon, there is not way of keeping goats in any kind of shape and getting a profit off that. Goats milk does not get subsidized like our cow sisters. Vicki
     
  10. bethlaf

    bethlaf Homegrown Family

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    comment,
    on the two customers i have now, i realize iam sellign a bit below market, but yes , this is rural arkansas,
    most who sell milk here sell for 7.00 a gallon ,
    im very inacessable , so for them to come to me , its a bit of a job , these folks are my neighbors, others will be sold for 7.00 a gallon ,
    in arkansas i am allowed like 1200 gallons a year wihtout inspection , but yes, like anywhere raw milk is skirting the laws . Vicki , youre right theres no logical way with what the dairies are paying for a goat dairy in and of itself to be profitable right now, they are simply paying too much per cwt.
    thats why even though i am on a route area for jackson mitchell, and i could upgrade and getset up , i wont , its too much like slave labor now the price goes up say 5-6.00 per cwt and i might think about it , let it go up 10-15 cwt, and i will be right there waiting to sign up
    right now im not even getting enough milk to make cheese, so its not a thought , but goats milk soap , im settting up a batch today :D
    and yes, the little bit of milk that goes itno it , to turn it into 3.00 bars of soap , you betcha , talk about value added :D
    Beth
     
  11. Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians

    Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians Well-Known Member

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    Beth advertise on realmilk.com I live 17 miles from a small town, dead end of a dirt road, doesn't get more rural than that. I have 2 customers that live 20 mintues from me, all my other customers drive from 1 to 3 hours to get here, one from Lousianna. Just like in selling goats, your customers are not your neighbors. If my neighbors wants goats milk they would go to the auction barn and buy a nanny :no:

    I sell 99% of my milk frozen, this has turned into a huge selling feature for me, no worry about hot milk in their vehicles as they drive home in our heat, no keeping ice! It's wonderful. We are working as a club to try to get Texas to have Oklahoma's milking regs...until then I sell to pets all over the country...some might well fed pets :) Vicki
     
  12. pen

    pen Well-Known Member

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    Mar 2, 2005
    Location:
    n.e. indiana
    I am going to try my first batch of soap tomorrow! I cant wait to try this, do you use lye or do you make one of the recipes with out it?
    We have some people near us that contract their milk to some people from Mi. they make their living from the milk and selling goats,and they seem to be doing pretty good.But it would cost quite a bit to get set up, and you have to be grade a for this deal,and they pick up once a week. I didnt know the milk sold for so much a gallon ! I used to give it to my daughter as a baby, but that was 30 years ago.Maybe we would do better by notcontracting and sell soap and pet food..?