SA group uses DairyBase to benchmark

07 Apr, 2016 04:00 AM
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Discussion group chairperson Rod Walker says one of the group's activities had been to collate, review and discuss business performance of member farms at the end of each financial year.
This has been really valuable in helping each of us better understand the key performance drivers on
Discussion group chairperson Rod Walker says one of the group's activities had been to collate, review and discuss business performance of member farms at the end of each financial year.

A group of South Australian dairyfarmers have been participating in group benchmarking activities for many years and are looking to DairyBase as their preferred analysis platform into the future.

The Mount Jagged Dairy Discussion Group involves member farms across the Fleurieu Peninsula south of Adelaide, and recently celebrated 30 years of group activities.

Group chairperson Rod Walker said one of those activities had been to collate, review and discuss business performance of member farms at the end of each financial year.

"For most years we have used a spreadsheet-based program to collate and present physical, financial and efficiency statistics for each member business," Mr Walker said. "Members have really valued the group benchmarking, equipping us to better track dairy performance over time because we can compare trends on our farms over time with trends on other local farms.

"This has been really valuable in helping each of us better understand the key performance drivers on our own farms. It has also been a great platform on which to support group discussions when we meet and visit individual member farms."

Building on this, group members recently decided to continue this benchmarking work using DairyBase, a new web-based business analysis tool developed by Dairy Australia.

Mr Walker said Mount Jagged Group members were excited about utilising DairyBase's national data. "We will be looking to compare trends in farm performance against other key farming areas to gain new insights into better farming practices," he said.

Agronomist Greg Mitchell is facilitator for this farmer group and agrees with the potential for DairyBase to add value. "There's no doubt that the DairyBase analysis is more comprehensive than our existing benchmark program," Mr Mitchell said.

"But we are even more excited by farmer members being able to access their own farm data online. This will allow farmers to more easily interrogate their own data, drill down and explore particular issues of interest, and even use their actual performance figures as a basis for future budgeting work."

DairyBase is a free online tool that will help dairyfarmers to:

*compare their own farm business over time;

*create annual reports;

*identify opportunities to drive profit and manage risk;

*make more informed business decisions; and

*generate comparative analysis according to farm size, region and production system.

For more information go to website www.dairybase.com.au.

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