Sino-Dutch Dairy Development Centre

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2014-R2 Corn/hay - feeding efficiency

2018-8-14 14:46:11 Comments:0 Views:271 category:Project Introduction

Questionnaire of production and management of dairy farms in china in 2014


2.1 About Principle Investigator


2.2 Introduction

In recent years, The ministry of agriculture of the People's Republic of China (MOA), Dairy Association of China (DAC) and Dairy industry and Technology system (CDITS) had collected large amount of data about dairy industries and followed up the development trends of China’s dairy sectors, but these data were mainly focused on economical and trading condition about dairy industries instead of basic information from dairy farms. After China dairy scandal in 2008, government set severe regulatory policies for Chinese dairy production sectors to guarantee the safety of dairy products (Mo and Huang et al., 2012). In a recent survey, feed conversion and nitrogen utilization efficiency, and the quantity of human-edible grains fed in different dairy farming systems were calculated using data collected from 24 dairy farms in China (Wang and Liu et al., 2014). Wang J. in 2008 carried out a study about China Dairy United dairy farming and compared it with other dairy farming systems in China (Wang and Chen et al., 2015). Although both of previously mentioned researches revealed some details on China’s dairy farming, neither of them gave a comprehensive perspective on the real production situation of dairy farms.
The current survey carried out to 1) reveal details on dairy farms in China 2) reveal the most influential on-farm parameters which affected MP and productivity of dairy cows in China 3) make a comparison between China’s dairy farm situations with that of United States of America.

2.3 Materials and methods
2.3.1 Data collection
The whole survey was executed in 2014, and 205 dairy farms from 13 provinces and/or cities in China were involved. All farms were enrolled in Dairy Industry and Technology System (CDITS) in China. A questionnaire was designed to acquire the information on farm management and production situation during 2014. 
The questionnaire was designed by researchers of CDITS. Dairy farms were selected in different provinces with different properties and scales to cover the main dairy farming regions in China. The questionnaire contained a total of 50 questions including multiple choices and closed questions. 
Questionnaires were sent to farm’s managers via e-mail by scientists from CDITS in different provinces, and questionnaires were checked by CDITS after being filled. In case of any problem regarding to questionnaires, the farmers or farm managers were contacted once again to verify the given information.
Information obtained from questionnaires were used to calculate fat corrected 4% FCM and feed efficiency: 4% FCM = (0.4 × test-day milk yield) + (15.0 × fat yield) (Keller Mayer and Dowd et al., 2011), Feed efficiency=4% FCM/dry matter intake.

2.3.2 Statistical analysis
Questionnaires less than %5 of questions were answered were excluded from statistical analyses. The normality of continuous variables were tested using UNIVERIATE procedure of SAS (SAS Institute, 2009). Data variance analysis on milk production, SCC, bacteria count, milk fat, milk protein, milk price among different province using the ANOVA procedure of SAS.  Regression analysis was conducted to model the relationship between farms characteristics and milk production using the GLM procedure of SAS 9.2 (2003). Reliability test was conducted to test the quality of the questionnaires using SPSS software (Zhe, 2009).  

2.4 Result
2.4.1 Survey response 
Quality analysis of questionnaires revealed that in total 205 questionnaires including 10,250 questions were filled of which 872 questions were not answered accounting for 8.5% of total questions in questionnaires. Reliability test showed that the Cronbach’s α index was larger than 0.8.
Farm demographics 
A total of 205 dairy farms were enrolled in this study from 13 provinces and/or large cities in China. These provinces and/or cities were the main dairy farming were as in China. The dairy farms covered in this study were 14 in Beijing city, 19 in Tianjin city, 20 in Hebei province, 10 in Henan province, 4 in Ningxia province, 26 in Inner Mongolia province, 30 in Heilongjiang province, 10 in Gansu province, 20 in Xinjiang province, 19 in Liaoning province, 10 in Shanxi province, 12 in Shaanxi province and 10 in Shanghai city. The questionnaires covered the information of 243,920 milking cows, 140,220 heifers, 29,888 calves and 88,984 new born calves. 
The average herd size in surveyed farms was 1202. Average herd sizes in a descending order were Heilongjiang 2457, Beijing 1659, Shaanxi 1269, Liaoning 1237, Xinjiang 1161, Shanxi 1026, Ningxia 969, Tianjin 915, Henan 914, Hebei 866, Gansu 653, Shanghai 653, and Inner Mongolia 648 heads. 
The survey covered 120 corporate dairy farms, 34 private farms, 31 cooperate farms, 15 commune farms, 4 milking stations and 1 household dairy farm. Corporate dairy farms comprised 58.8% of enrolled farms with a total number of 188,963 cows. It was found that farm type had significant influence on MP (P<0.0001). Milking station had the highest average MP 30.33±4.06 kg and highest FE among the different types of surveyed farms. 

2.4.2 Milk parameter
Average milk production in 205 selected dairy farms were 25.4±4.14 kg, with the maximum and minimum of 37.56 kg and 15.00 kg, respectively. MP differed significantly among the provinces/cities studied in this survey (P<0.0001). Average MP of provinces in descending order was: Ningxia 33.33±0.58 kg, Beijing 30.96±1.84 kg, Tianjin 28.13.50 kg, Henan 27±2.43 kg, Xinjiang 26.18±5.76 kg, Shanghai 25.60±2.99 kg, Hebei 25.49±3.69 kg, Heilongjiang 25.43±4.19 kg, Liaoning 25.06±4.48 kg, Shanxi 24.12±3.39 kg, Shaanxi 23.73±2.85 kg, Gansu 23.70±1.89 kg, Inner Mongolia 22.17±3.04 kg. In China, it is a common practice to divide lactating dairy cows into high production (HPG), medium production (MPG) and low production groups (LPG). The results of present survey showed that average milk production in HPG was 33.54±4.59kg with a maximum and minimum of 60 and 16 kg, respectively. There were significant differences between farms with regard to MP of HPG (P<0.0001). Average MP of HPG cows in the provinces/cities studied in a descending order was: Ningxia 44.8±0.29 kg, Shanghai 40.0±6.68 kg, Beijing 36.0±4.16 kg, Hebei 34.2±4.06 kg, Xinjiang 34.2±8.93 kg, Henan 34.0±4.84 kg, Liaoning 34.0±3.98 kg, Heilongjiang 33.3±4.73 kg, Tianjin 33.2±5.10 kg, Gansu 32.6±2.66 kg, Shaanxi 31.4±3.46 kg, Shanxi 31.6±2.92 kg, Inner Mongolia 30.3±2.98 kg. Significant differences were observed in MP of MPG lactating dairy cows among provinces/cities studied in the present survey. Average MP of MPG was the highest in Shanghai (31.57±7.63 kg) and the lowest in Inner Mongolia (22.76±3.01 kg). The results of present survey showed that LPG lactating dairy cows in Shanghai, Beijing and Ningxia had a higher MP compared with the LPG cows of other provinces/cities level.
Milk fat, milk protein, milk price, SCC, bacteria count were difference in different provinces/cities. Average milk fat content in 205 farm were 3.88±0.8% with the maximum and minimum of 4.1% and 3.1%, respectively. Farms in Hebei, Ningxia and Inner Mongolia produced milk with the highest fat content (more than 4.0%), while milk produced in Shanghai farms had the lowest fat content (3.6±0.14%). All farms in the present study produced milk with fat content higher than 3.6%. Average milk protein content in the farms was 3.19±0.20%. Dairy farms in Henan, Ningxia, Heilongjiang, Xinjiang, Liaoning and Shanxi provinces produced milk with average milk protein content higher than 3.2%. Average milk protein content of farms in Beijing, Tianjin, Hebei, Inner Mongolia, Gansu, Shaanxi and Shanghai was lower than 3.2%, with Shaanxi’s farm had the lowest milk protein content (3.07±0.05%). Average bacteria count in 205 dairy farms was 14 × 1000 cells/mL. Average milk bacteria count in Shanxi’s dairy farms was the highest (41.67±15.86 × 1000 cells/mL). Also, average milk bacteria count in Henan dairy farms was higher than 20 × 1000 cells/ml), while milk bacteria counts in Beijing, Ningxia, Shaanxi and Shanghai dairy farms were lower than 10 × 1000 cells/ml. Milk bacteria counts in Hebei, Xinjiang, Liaoning dairy farms were in the range of 10 to 20 × 1000 cells/mL. SCC also differed among dairy farms of surveyed provinces/cities. Overall, average SCC was 31.48 × 1000 cells/mL. Average SCC in Ningxia dairy farms was lower than 19 × 1000 cells/ml. Milk produced in Xinjiang, Inner Mongolia, Beijing, Gansu, and Henan were with SCC higher than 30 × 1000 cells/ml, while milk produced by Tianjin, Hebei, Liaoning, Heilongjiang, Shaanxi and Shanghai dairy farms were with SCC lower than 30 × 1000 cells/mL. Milk price also was different in provinces/cities covered by this survey with an average 4.12 RMB/kg in 2014. Average milk price in 13 provinces/cities of China was highest in Liaoning (4.62 RMB/kg) and lowest in Xinjiang province (3.48 RMB/kg). Average milking day in 205 dairy farms assessed in the present survey was 222.9±49.67 days, with average milking days of 149.26±67.48, 217.13±53.45, and 276.34±65.83 days for HPG, MPG and LPG, respectively.

2.4.3 Ration and dry matter intake  
Analysis of questionnaires showed that dairy cows had an average DMI of 20.1±2.89 kg. Average DMI in HPG, MPG and LPG were 22.6±2.80 kg, MPG 19.76±2.86 kg and 16.95±2.86 kg, respectively. Dairy cows in in Xinjiang dairy farms had the highest average DMI. Average DMI in cows of Hebei, Inner Mongolia, Heilongjiang, Gansu and Shaanxi dairy farms was lower than 20 kg/day. In other provinces/cities, average DMI was higher than 20 kg/day. Average concentrate fed were 12.17±2.31 kg, 9.77±2.38 kg and 7.29±2.34 kg/day in HPG, MPG and LPG, respectively. Average ords rate in HPG, MPG and LPG was 4.29, 4.21 and 3.54 %, respectively.
Average dietary cost for different production groups and different provinces/cities were calculated. In 205 dairy farms, average dietary cost was 55.35 RMB/cow /day in November of 2014, with average of 66.83 RMB/cow, 53.7 RMB, and 41.34 RMB/cow for HPG, MPG and LPG, respectively. Analysis of dietary cost by different province showed that dietary cost was the highest in Shanghai dairy farms (70.0±8.83 RMB/cow) and the lowest for dairy farms of Liaoning province (43.4±6.33 RMB/cow).
The main forages with their respective dry matter content included in the rations of dairy cows in farms were studied in the current survey. Overall, mean forage utilization rate in dairy farms of 13 provinces/cities for corn silage, sheep hay, domestic alfalfa, imported alfalfa and oat hay, corn stalk silage, wheat straw, and peanut vain, were 94.82%, 76.17%, 65.95%,56.48%,37.82%,24.87%,30.31% and 8.29%, respectively. Average moisture content of corn silage and corn stalk silage was 75.57±3.48% and 71.00±4.91%, respectively.

2.4.5 Feed efficiency
Overall average FE of all farms studied were 1.27±0.18, and 1.48±0.19, 1.24±0.19, 0.98±0.25 for HPG, MPG and LPG lactating dairy cows. With respect to FE dairy farms of Ningxia and Tianjin were the best (1.48±0.06 and 1.41±0.23, respectively) and Xinjiang, Liaoning, Shanxi, Inner Mongolia dairy farms were the worst with a mean FE of lower than 1.2. High producing dairy cows in dairy farms of Ningxia province had the highest FE (1.78±0.01), the second was Shanghai province (1.74±0.27), and the lowest was in Xingjian dairy farms (1.29±0.25). Feed efficiency of MPG cows could roughly reflect the real feed efficiency of lactating dairy cows in China’s dairy farms. Feed efficiency of MPG lactating cows in provinces/cities surveyed was studied, and it was highest in dairy farms of Shanghai (1.5±0.26) and lowest in Liaoning’s dairy farms (1.1±0.14). In the LPG, Ningxia’s dairy farms also had the highest FE (1.19±0.07), LPG in dairy farms of Beijing, Tianjin, Hebei, Gansu, Shaanxi, Shanghai had FE higher than 1.0 and  those of in Henan, Inner Mongolia, Xinjiang, Liaoning, Shanxi’s dairy farms had FE lower than 1.0. 

2.4.5.1 Reproduction situation and major disease
Present survey showed that the most prevalent diseases in Chinese dairy farms were mastitis, foot disease, reproductive diseases and metabolic diseases. From 205 dairy farms enrolled in present study, 106 dairy farm managers selected mastitis as the most important disease in 2014 (with a 59.89% of total farms); 54 managers selected foot disease as the major disease in their farms (30.51% of total farms); 50 farm managers selected reproduction diseases including metritis, infertility, placenta retention as the most prevalent disease in their farms (in total with a 28.25% of total farms); 32 farmers thought that metabolic diseases mainly including diarrhea were most abundant in their herds  (18.08% of total farms); and 25 farms selected postpartum diseases as the main diseases of their herds (14.12% of total farms).
Results of current survey showed that average reproduction rate, was 80.13±8.6%. Accordingly, conception rate was 47.24±10 %, average age at first calving was 24.97±1.7 months and average calving interval was 15.27±5.7 months. 

2.4.5.2 Feeding 
From 205 dairy farms, 140 farms fed their cows three times a day, 53 farms fed twice daily and six  fed their cows once a day. Average frequency of ration pushing was 6.03±3.2 times a day. Feeding methods were divide into total mixed ration (TMR) and others. Results of present survey showed that 92.6% of dairy farms were using TMR for feeding their animals. 

2.4.5.3 Housing systems
Our survey showed free stalls were accounting for 89.16% of dairy farms, and the rest 10.84% of farms were using tie stalls. 
2.4.5.4 Manure processing
Dairy farms of China either process manure manually or automatically. Hundred and thirty four dairy farms accounting for 68.7% were using automatic manure cleaning systems and the rest 31.3% were removing manure from their barns manually. Regarding to manure utilization, 144 dairy farms had stacking fermentation (76.19% of farms), 36 farms processed manure by solid-liquid separation (19.05%), and 9 farms had both manure processing accounting for  4.76% of farms.

2.4.5.5 Barn condition 
Questionnaires also had four questions about barn conditions. According to current survey, in most farms (58.56 %) the preferred bedding material was sand, followed by dry feces (17.13 % of farms), rubber (16.53 % of farms), and saw dust (1.66% of farms). The rest (6.08% of farms) used other types of bedding materials in their barns. 
Yard surface of the dairy farms was consisted of ground (55.41% of farms), bricks (17.20% of farms), mixed concrete (21.66% of farms), and the rest of farms had other types of construction materials (19.6% of farms). 
Selected farms used different types of materials for yard padding including sand (64.88% of farms), sawdust (1.79% of farms), dry feces (30.36% of farms), rubber (1.19% of farms) and other types of material (1.79% of farms). 
Barn floors in farms mostly covered by concrete (91.36 % of farms) followed by brick (3.70% of farms). Farms in which their barn floors were covered with no construction materials (ground) were accounting for 1.23% of surveyed farms, and the rest used other types of construction materials on their barn floors. 

2.4.5.6 Milking information
Most farms milked their lactating cows three times daily (73.63% of farms), followed by twice daily (24.38%) and once a day (1.99%). 
Questionnaire had one question about milking equipment suppliers. Our survey revealed that 46.34 % of farms were equipped with milking machines from Delaval company, 27 farms were using milking equipment of WestfiaSurge company ( 13.17% of farms), 11 farms used Afimilk’s equipment (5.37%  of farms), 10 farms were using Dadulin milking equipment ( 4.88% of farms) and 30.24% of farms were using milking equipment from other companies. 
From farms studied in this survey, only 10 farms (4.88% of farms) were not selling their produced milk to the factory.  Our survey revealed that 55 farms supplied milk to Inner Mongolia Yili Industrial Group Limited by Share Ltd ( 20.74% of farms), 39 dairy farms supplied milk to Mengniu  (29.26% of farms), 21 farms supplied milk to Bright Milk (11.17% of farms), 12 farms were selling their milk to Sanyuan (6.34% of farms), 10 farms were providing milk to Yinqiao (10 5.32% of farms), 10 farms were suppliers of American Dairy (5.32% of farms) and 41 farms supplied milk to other factories (21.81% of farms).

2.4.5.7 Sperm providers
The top six frozen sperm providers to dairy farms of current survey were Beijing dairy breeding center (BDCC) (19.38% of farms) Alta-Agricorp (13.95% of farms), Semex (11.63% of farms) Sk-xing (10.47% of farms), Improved Varieties Subsidy (10.08% of farms) and ABS  (9.69% of farms).
The objective of this study was to provide a comprehensive overview about current situation of China dairy farms with regard to managerial and production parameters. MP, DMI, FE, management parameters, herd demographics, ration characteristics, housing condition and information on prevalent diseases were included in the present survey. The present survey showed that production performance differed among dairy farms of provinces/cities studied. According to our survey, there was a gap between Chinese and high level dairy farms among the world on production performance and managerial parameters. This study offers a comprehensive understanding about production and management situation in China’s dairy farms in comparison with those of American dairy farms, which will help decision makers of China’s dairy sectors to fill the gap between Chinese and high level dairy industry among the world.

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