Identifier

etd-0418102-195129

Degree

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Human Resource Education and Workforce Development

Document Type

Dissertation

Abstract

The dairy industry in Southeast Louisiana is one of the largest agricultural industries, with a gross farm value of over 74 million dollars. Much of the economy of Southeast Louisiana parishes depends on the dairy industry. Therefore, improvements in production efficiency and/or effectiveness would have an enormous impact on the parish economy. This study identifies the use of recommended practices by dairy producers, thus allowing educational programs to be focused on specific areas of greatest need. The purpose of the study was to describe the management practices of Southeast Louisiana dairy producers and to determine if a relationship existed between the use of recommended practices and annual milk production per cow. The target population for this study was the dairy producers in Southeast Louisiana. The accessible population for this study was family-owned dairy producers in Southeast Louisiana who were in business during 2000 and still producing milk in September 2001. A simple random sample of 60 dairy producers was drawn from the population list of 319 dairy producers. The instrument used in the study consisted of three sections designed to measure: personal characteristics of the dairy producer, management programs used, and extension contacts. The data for this study were collected by personal interview. Some of the major findings of the study are as follows: The Louisiana Cooperative Extension Service had a positive influence in producer adoption of recommended dairy management practices. As the Extension contacts with dairy producers increased, the overall practice scores increased. The mean overall practice score was 16.6 out of 30. Producers with a higher use of recommended practices tended to have a higher annual milk production per cow. Annual milk production per cow ranged from 6,480 to 20,000 pounds with a mean of 13,524. The four management programs that had a positive relationship with annual milk production per cow were record keeping, feeding management, cow comfort, and reproduction. The researcher recommends that an Extension publication be printed that includes as comprehensive listing of recommended dairy practices and the effect on milk production.

Date

2002

Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Mike Burnette

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