Verbetering arbeidsefficientie op vier melkveehouderijbedrijven : netwerkproject De Tik

P.F.M.M. Roelofs, T.A. Vogelzang, G.H. Kroeze, L. Schotanus

Research output: Book/ReportReportProfessional


On four dairy farms, the labour demand and effects of alternate farming plans on labour efficiency and financial results are studied. Insight into the development of labour demand during a year was obtained by labour recording during three weeks (week 39, 43 and 46) and by labour budgeting. To record labour demand, every worker on the farms recorded exactly how many quarters of an hour were spent on welldefined treatments. Labour budgeting is done using the computer-model AgroWerk. To obtain detailed input data for this model, all farms were visited and data were collected together with the farmers. As expected, the results of labour recording and labour budgeting were different. Labour recording during three weeks gave specific information about the farms in question and during these three weeks, but did not represent the labour demand for seasonal activities. Further, it was difficult for the workers to distinguish some categories of treatments. It was concluded that labour budgeting gave the best insight into labour demand and its distribution over the year, especially when combined with the data obtained by labour recording. Total labour demands were between 4268 hours on the dairy farm with 91 dairy cows and 6659 hours on the farm with 89 cows. Labour demand per 1000 kg milk was between 5.6 and 8.0 hours. Labour demand was affected by farm size (scale effects), farming out the cattle breed, calling in agricultural contractors and the intensity of the grassland use (kg milk per ha). For each farm, effects of one or two alternative business plans on labour demand and financial results were calculated. The alternatives consisted of combinations of expansion of farm size, expansion of the milking shed or purchase of a milking robot, and several other changes in equipment and management. In all cases the work efficiency improved. Six alternatives resulted in reduction of total work demand, three of them also in a light improvement of financial results. In three other cases, the financial results decreased firmly. Evaluating the project, the farmers judged it gave them good insight in labour input and labour demand on their farms and in effects of alternate farming plans on labour efficiency and financial results. They intend to use the results in their business plans.
Original languageDutch
Place of PublicationWageningen
PublisherAgrotechnology & Food Innovations
Number of pages67
ISBN (Print)9789067549202
Publication statusPublished - 2005

Publication series

NameRapport / Agrotechnology & Food Innovations
PublisherAgrotechnology & Food Innovations


  • labour economics
  • demand
  • labour market
  • alternative farming
  • labour productivity
  • dairy farms
  • labour
  • farm labour

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