Estimating milk yield and value losses from increased somatic cell count on US dairy farms

Joleen C Hadrich, C. A. Wolf, J. Lombard, T. M. Dolak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Milk loss due to increased somatic cell counts (SCC) results in economic losses for dairy producers. This research uses 10 mo of consecutive dairy herd improvement data from 2013 and 2014 to estimate milk yield loss using SCC as a proxy for clinical and subclinical mastitis. A fixed effects regression was used to examine factors that affected milk yield while controlling for herd-level management. Breed, milking frequency, days in milk, seasonality, SCC, cumulative months with SCC greater than 100,000 cells/mL, lactation, and herd size were variables included in the regression analysis. The cumulative months with SCC above a threshold was included as a proxy for chronic mastitis. Milk yield loss increased as the number of test days with SCC ≥100,000 cells/mL increased. Results from the regression were used to estimate a monetary value of milk loss related to SCC as a function of cow and operation related explanatory variables for a representative dairy cow. The largest losses occurred from increased cumulative test days with a SCC ≥100,000 cells/mL, with daily losses of $1.20/cow per day in the first month to $2.06/cow per day in mo 10. Results demonstrate the importance of including the duration of months above a threshold SCC when estimating milk yield losses. Cows with chronic mastitis, measured by increased consecutive test days with SCC ≥100,000 cells/mL, resulted in higher milk losses than cows with a new infection. This provides farm managers with a method to evaluate the trade-off between treatment and culling decisions as it relates to mastitis control and early detection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3588-3596
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Dairy Science
Volume101
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2018

Fingerprint

somatic cell count
dairy farming
milk yield
Milk
Cell Count
Mastitis
mastitis
cows
milk
Proxy
Farms
cells
herd improvement
milking frequency
culling (animals)
herd size
testing
Lactation
dairy herds
dairies

Keywords

  • SCC
  • economics
  • mastitis
  • milk yield

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article

Cite this

Estimating milk yield and value losses from increased somatic cell count on US dairy farms. / Hadrich, Joleen C; Wolf, C. A.; Lombard, J.; Dolak, T. M.

In: Journal of Dairy Science, Vol. 101, No. 4, 01.04.2018, p. 3588-3596.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Hadrich, Joleen C ; Wolf, C. A. ; Lombard, J. ; Dolak, T. M. / Estimating milk yield and value losses from increased somatic cell count on US dairy farms. In: Journal of Dairy Science. 2018 ; Vol. 101, No. 4. pp. 3588-3596.
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