Factors associated with grain feeding in dairy farms located in the central-western region of Paraná State, Brazil

Pedro Gustavo Loesia Lima, Julio Cesar Damasceno, João Augusto Rossi Borges, Ferenc Istvan Bánkuti, Raiane Real Martinelli


This study aimed to investigate factors associated with grain feeding and determine the typology of dairy farms that use high-grain diets. Twenty-two farm operators were interviewed in three municipalities located in the central-western region of Paraná state, Brazil. Information on reproductive and nutritional management practices, sociodemographic characteristics, and farm performance was collected. Data were analyzed using exploratory factor analysis, hierarchical cluster analysis, and multiple linear regression. Three factors (F1, F2, and F3) were extracted, which together explained 82.61% of the total variance. F1 comprised diet quality, technology, and breeding composition. F2 comprised labor and size. F3 comprised feed quality and schooling. Farms were classified into four groups and compared in terms of factor scores and performance parameters. Group 1 had the highest mean score on F1 (0.715), group 4 on F2 (1.642), and group 2 on F3 (1.116). Groups 4 and 1 had the highest milk productivity (2043.50 and 399.52 L day-1, respectively) and labor efficiency (418.16 and 148.63 L worker-1 day-1, respectively). Group 4 also had the highest mean number of cows per worker (25.52 cows worker-1). Regression analysis revealed that diet quality, technology, and breeding composition (F1) explained the variance in cow productivity. Labor and size, (F2) explained the variance in number of cows per worker. Daily productivity and labor efficiency were explained by both F1 and F2. Feed quality and farm operator’s level of schooling did not explain the variation in any of the variables. We found that roughage quality, breeding technology, and herd breed composition are the major factors associated with grain feeding. Farmers who feed cows high-quality roughage throughout the year and invest in genetic improvement and selective breeding strategies are more likely to adopt high-grain feeding and have high milk productivity.


Animal feed; Concentrate; Farm typology; Multivariate approach.

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Auldist, M. J., Marett, L. C., Greenwood, J. S., Hannah, M., Jacobs, J. L., & Wales, W. J. (2013). Effects of different strategies for feeding supplements on milk production responses in cows grazing a restricted pasture allowance. Journal of Dairy Science, 96(2), 1218-1231. doi: 10.3168/jds.2012-6079

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5433/1679-0359.2021v42n6p3431

Semina: Ciênc. Agrár.
Londrina - PR
E-ISSN 1679-0359
DOI: 10.5433/1679-0359
E-mail: semina.agrarias@uel.br
Este obra está licenciado com uma Licença Creative Commons Atribuição-NãoComercial 4.0 Internacional