Aaron Berger, Beef Educator Nebraska Extension
When beef producers look at annual cow costs and doing an economic analysis, three categories tend to make up the largest percentage of total costs: feed, labor/equipment and cow depreciation. Other expenses, such as breeding expense and veterinary costs, tend to be significantly less than the “Big Three.”
To conduct an economic analysis of a ranch, first break the ranch into enterprises to understand where value is being created and costs are occurring. Land ownership, hay production, cow-calf and replacement heifer development are four of the major enterprises on many ranches.