Dairy Cost Study

The Economics Section (Alberta Agriculture and Forestry), in cooperation with Alberta Milk, undertakes the Dairy Cost Study. This annual program provides Alberta dairy farmers with the opportunity to get a free detailed cost of production report on their dairy enterprise.

The Dairy Cost Study aims to:

  • provide good management information to farm operators, so they can make better business management decisions
  • gather cost of production information at the farm level, with aggregated results of all participants included in the annual Economics of Milk Production publication

Participants receive:

  • a detailed business analysis of their dairy enterprise
  • production costs and returns as an annual total, per cow, per hectoliter (hL) and per kilogram (kg) of butterfat basis
  • tables and charts giving a quick snapshot of the farm’s cost breakdown
  • graphs identifying the farm results compared to other participants on the study
  • a report comparing farm results to the provincial benchmarks
  • long-term participants receive their own 5-year benchmark report to assess the performance of their farm over time

There is no cost to participate in the study. For more information, see Provincial Dairy Cost Study: Calling for Participants (PDF, 276 KB).

Economics of Milk Production

The annual Economics of Milk Production publication provides information on the costs and returns of producing milk in Alberta. This publication compiles information from dairy farmers participating in the Dairy Cost Study. The resulting benchmarks can be used as references for farmers and those interested in the dairy industry in Alberta.

This publication provides:

  • a current and continuing account of the costs and returns of milk production in Alberta
  • valuable research information to Alberta milk producers
  • economic information for dairy industry partners

View the Economics of Milk Production 2018 publication, with supporting publications.

Additional information

Each year the Economics of Milk Production is published along with supporting publications that provide breakdown of cost and returns. These publications include:

  • A Statistical Business Analysis
  • Benchmarks of Dairy Cost Study:
    • Alberta Benchmarks
    • North Benchmarks
    • South Benchmarks
  • Cost Components per Cow
  • Cost Components per HL
  • Cost Components per KG of Butterfat
  • Dairy Enterprise Margins Over Time
  • 5-Year Alberta Historical Reflection

View the Economics of Milk Production and supporting publications by year.

Join the program

Sign up online to be part of the program. The Dairy Cost Study is always open to new participants.

Producer information is collected in strict confidence. Only aggregated, non-identifying information is published.

Contact

Connect with the Economics Section:

Toll free: 310-0000 before the phone number (in Alberta)
Phone: 780-415-2153
Email: pauline.vanbiert@gov.ab.ca