A simple stocking rate model was used to derive stocking rates that maximise milkfat/ha and profit/ha. A study of recent changes in the cost/price structure indicates that economically optimal stocking rates are determined mainly by the parameters of the milkfat/cow- stocking rate relationship and are relatively insensitive to even large changes in the cost/price structure. Farmers' options of holding costs and adjusting stocking rates are discussed. Finally, an example is used to demonstrate the use of the method with research data and to illustrate factors worth considering in designing and interpreting trials to assess the value of a management input. Future trials should be run at stocking rates designed to describe production-stocking rate relationships rather than to accentuate treatment differences

TI, Phillips

Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 43, , 91-92, 1983
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