Decisions are made daily on a dairy farm — some involve cow and labor management, others address crop and business concerns, and there are a host of others in between.
Unfortunately, you do not always have enough information to make the best decisions for current circumstances. One could argue time constraints significantly hamper the ability to make profitable decisions all the time, notes Victor E. Cabrera, University of Wisconsin-Madison extension dairy systems management specialist.
“Oftentimes there are too many variables that simply cannot be controlled due to the nature of the business. A combination of highly volatile market prices and increasingly complex technology and management strategies do not leave much margin for error, either,” he adds.
In response, a renewed shift toward advanced information management is currently taking place within the dairy industry. Previously foreign words such as “modeling” and “simulation” are becoming commonplace, thanks largely in part to advancements in computer technology.
Cabrera says, “With the help of computers and some advanced mathematics, we are not only able to manage the herd events happening today, but effectively forecast changes in herd structure as well.”
The Dairy Expansion Decision Support System — a decision support system designed to explore dairy farm production and expansion scenarios and simulate specific metrics of their performance — provides critical information dairy producers need to actively manage risk on their dairies.
Source: University of Wisconsin