By Zac B. Sarian

Here is an investment scheme in a small dairy project that is especially designed for OFWs, retirees and aspiring agri-entrepreneurs. It can be obtained through installment or on a lay-away basis if one does not have the cash right away.

This is the Dairy Gold dairy investment scheme being offered by King Ranch Dairy Farm, which has a thriving milking herd in Rosario, Batangas. It is run by the father-and-son tandem of Alex and King Carlos. Based on their own experience, small-scale dairying can be a good moneymaking proposition that can be undertaken in many parts of the country.

Cows on the milkline at the King Ranch.

Here is how the scheme works. Investors can choose from three packages which one they think best suits their circumstances. Package A consists of three Holstein-Sahiwal heifers that are already three months pregnant. Package B consists of 5 head, while Package C consists of 10 animals.

The Holstein-Sahiwal crosses from New Zealand have been proven to be highly adaptable to the tropical climate of the Philippines. Each cow is priced at P130,000 and can be paid for on installment within 12 months.

How soon can that investment be recovered? King Carlos explains that a few months after recipients receive their pregnant animals, the cows will give birth and start producing milk for up to 300 days. In the first year of milking, one cow can give an average of 10 liters a day, and these can be sold for P50 per liter for an average income of P500 per day for each animal.

As per their experience, King said, one can make a profit of P11,500 per month from each cow by selling the raw milk at P50 per liter. That means P138,000 per head in one year. Of course that could vary depending on how the animals are managed. He said that generally, the cost of the cow and other expenses can be recovered in 16 months.

Aside from dairy farmer’s income from milk, the calves are an additional bonus. A female calf, when raised to breeding age, will normally fetch P80,000, according to King. On the other hand, a male that is raised for slaughter may sell for P40,000 in less than one year. When it is raised for breeding, the bull can fetch P55,000 per head.

The project does not require a big tract of farmland. One hectare is enough to take care of the three cows in Package A. The animals can be confined and fed on a cut-and-carry basis. The 5-cow package can be maintained on two hectares of land. On the other hand, the 10-cow herd
will need only three hectares in the first five years. After that time, the herd will have increased and a bigger area may be required.

Each package includes a dairy farming starter pack composed of animal healthcare kit that consists of medicines, vitamins, and minerals, and a forage production kit that includes planting materials for Mombasa grass, Star grass, and Pakchong 1 or Super Napier.

What is important is that investors undergo hands-on training on the various aspects of starting and running a small dairy project right at the King Ranch Dairy Farm in Batangas.

This appeared in Agriculture Monthly’s December 2016 issue.