Producers

Available Land

Marking the third consecutive year of value decline from the record high of 2014, the all-land category across Nebraska for the year ending February 1, 2017 averaged about 9 percent lower than the prior year. 

The state average was $2,820 per acre or about a 9 percent ($295 per acre) decline to the prior year’s value of $3,115 per acre. View the full farm real estate report.

Taxes and Incentives

Sales tax

Income

Dairy Budgets

Each month agriculture economists from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln develop a dairy budget to estimate profits and losses on the dairy.  Click here for the dairy budgets and marketing and pricing.

Milk price

The milk supply, demand, and price situation every week on a regional, national, and international basis for milk, butter, cheese, and dry and fluid products can be found on the USDA AMS website.

Dairy Processing

Nebraska dairies have multiple marketing options with five processors in Nebraska:

  • Hiland, Norfolk
  • Milk Specialties Global, Norfolk
  • LALA Foods, Omaha
  • Hiland, Omaha
  • West Point Dairy, West Point

Four across the border in Iowa:

  • Agropur, Hull
  • AMPI, Sanborn
  • Dean Foods, Le Mars
  • Wells Blue Bunny, Le Mars

Four Cooperatives:

  • Dairy Farmers of America (DFA)
  • Associated Milk Producers, Inc (AMPI)
  • Land O’Lakes
  • Agropur

Additional Information

Nebraska Ag Statistics

There are plenty of reasons for new dairies to come to Nebraska and existing dairies to grow.

#1 in irrigated acres for reliable corn supply
#2 in distillers grains production
#3 in corn production
#4 in alfalfa production

Growth and Development

Current dairy growth

  • 15% increase in cows numbers since 2014
  • Three new milking robots since 2017
  • Nebraska is in the Central Region Federal Milk Order #32

Heifer development

Several high quality heifer development lots are located in Nebraska. For more information contact Rod Johnson: 402-853-2028.

Educational Support

UNL Dairy Extension

Nebraska Dairy Extension offers a large variety of information and programming for dairy producers throughout the year.  Articles, dairy budgets, videos, NebGuides,  upcoming events and more can be found on the UNL Dairy Extension website.

Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture in Curtis

Dairy Production program: 

This program provides students with the opportunity to study dairy production in a unique collaborative venture between two top rated academic institutions: the Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture and South Dakota State University. Students spend three semesters studying applied animal science and general agriculture at NCTA, and one intensive semester studying hands-on dairy production at SDSU. Participants will graduate from NCTA with an Associate Degree and a high level of skill and proficiency in dairy production.

Feed

Nebraska has an ample supply of quality feed available for animal agriculture. The feed resources include more than 1.27 billion bushels of corn harvested from 8.25 million acres; 250,000 acres of sorghum; 4.66 million acres of soybeans; and 2.85 million acres of hay (1.25 million acres of alfalfa and 1.6 million acres of wild hay).

Nebraska’s relatively dry climate and ample irrigation make it an ideal location for producing a consistent supply of aflatoxin-free corn. According to the Nebraska Corn Quality Study, more than 95% of the samples collected over 14 years graded U.S. #1 or #2. Our feed is high quality and inexpensive.

Ethanol Co-Products

Nebraska’s livestock industry, including dairy, can benefit from ethanol production through the consumption of the ethanol co-product distillers grain. Marketing projections for distillers grain is 1.595 million metric tons, and there is potential for this to double or triple in the next few years. A dairy cow typically can consume five or more pounds of dry distillers grain per day. Distillers grain is a very cost‑effective feed ingredient for lactating dairy cattle, and access to this co-product continues to grow.

Incentives

In 2006, Nebraska’s tax law was updated by LB 990 – passed by the Nebraska Legislature and signed into law by Governor Dave Heineman. LB 990 added two important financial incentives for livestock operations, including dairies:

Qualified livestock production projects are eligible for $2,750 for each $50,000 in net investment, as well as $3,000 for each new full-time employee.

Qualified livestock modernization projects are eligible for credits worth 10percent of the net investment (credits limited to $30,000 per operation). Livestock modernization includes projects that involve depreciable buildings, facilities, and equipment, other than motor vehicles, planes, and railroad rolling stock.

For more information about Nebraska incentives, contact:

Mary Hugo, Economic Incentive Manager
Nebraska Department of Revenue
Phone: (402) 471-5790
Fax: (402) 471-5767
mary.hugo@nebraska.gov
www.revenue.ne.gov