Decision-making tools for feeding cattle

As fall and harvest starts to wind down in Wisconsin, some farmers are starting to buy feeders to feed for the winter.  This year, farmers are taking a more critical look at the economics of their feeding operation with strong feeder calf prices and high corn prices.  The UW Extension Livestock Team has developed some helpful decision-making tools for this purpose.

Feedlot Enterprise Budget Worksheet is a great tool to develop a budget for feeding a group of cattle and includes a breakeven analysis.  This worksheet can easily be used for backgrounding and stocker enterprises.  The worksheet included a feed costs and yardage calculator to supplement the feedlot enterprise budget.    The Feedlot Yardage Calculator is valuable tool for feed operations, however few farmers know what their yardage costs are for their operation.

A few examples budgets have been put together for this fall for different types of feeding operations found in Wisconsin.  These examples are to aid the enterprise budget spreadsheet and producers are encourage to enter their own values into the spreadsheets.   Fall 2010 Example Cattle Feeder Budgets

These worksheets and other economic tools and software can be found on Wisconsin Beef Information Resources page.  For any questions regarding the spreadsheet and examples please contact Amy Radunz at or Bill Halfman at

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