I took part in a discussion the other day on the biggest roadblocks to improving ranch profitability. Experience and logic tells me there are eight common problems.
Here's my list:
1. Lack of interest in learning correct grazing management. This can increase profits by two to three times.
2. Lack of interest in learning marketing knowledge. This can be another way to greatly increase profits.
3. Lack of interest in learning low-stress stockmanship. This is a proven way to reduce medicine costs and have higher performance.
4. Lack of interest in protein supplementation when it's needed or cost effective. Well-applied supplementation in certain environments can eliminate hay feeding and thus save around $100 per cow per year, particularly for people using low octane/high fiber stockpiled forages.
5. An incorrect mineral program leads to inefficiency in forage utilization in places where there are mineral imbalances and forages with poor mineral content.
6. Unadapted genetics: The more challenging the environment the more important it is to have adapted genetics.
7. High-octane genetics in low-octane forage environments is always a mistake. High-octane forages are those with moderate growth which hold quality well. Low-octane environments are characteristically high-growth environments with much lignification of the forages.
8. Use of outdated or unprofitable traditions. Usually it's characterized by a phrase like, "We have always done it like this." A closed mind is like a closed parachute, it won't work until you open it."
Solving these issues is the crux of the Regenerative Grazing schools taught by Johann Zietsman and me. You can learn more about these upcoming schools on my website.