Have you ever wondered what top dairy producers do to be profitable? Mike Hosterman, an agricultural business consultant with AgChoice Farm Credit, told audience members at the Penn State Nutrition conference this week that the most profitable dairy producers control the controllable, have a positive attitude, surround themselves with positive people, realize it’s a business first and a way of life second, and there is no magic solution.

Hosterman says herds with the highest profit margins generally have a healthy balance in these five key areas: volume, efficiency, capacity, internal growth – industry skills, and cost of production – cost control. The most profitable producers are not necessarily the best in all areas, but above average in all areas, he says. These same five factors can be applied to any business.