How a Grain Roller Mill Saves Time and Money
Updated: Sep 30
In the cattle business, margins can be tight. And they often turn on finding a key savings in money, time, or effort that leads to a reduced overall cost per head. This helps you make more in the good years and get by more easily in the lean ones. It insulates you against the shocks in the market or major impacts like trade wars that could otherwise sink your finances.
An efficient grain roller mill can help you find these economies, saving you time and money. Here are a few of the ways that a roller mill can help your cattle or other livestock business stay profitable year after year despite changes in the market.
Grind Grain Fast
The time you spend grinding grain is time you can't spend doing other tasks like mending fences or managing breeding operations. It can also lead to you spending more on hiring people to help you handle the workload.
Automatic's roller mills can grind corn blindingly fast. Our high-capacity roller mills can handle up to 20,000 bushels an hour (~ 560 tons), which means that you can create feed for even the largest commercial operation in a short period of time. Our smaller electric roller mills are similarly fast, so you can find the perfect mill that fits the size of your operation.
Save money by hiring fewer hands, and have more time in your day to handle all the tasks that need doing.
Buy Less Expensive Feed
Feed is likely your largest expense per head. And it can be quite expensive to buy pelleted feed or already-processed grains. Even if you're getting good gain from the feed, it can be hard to turn a reasonable profit buying somebody else's processed grain.
With a roller mill, you can buy basic grains like corn and turn them into your own feed. Not only that, but with the ability to grind grain fast, you can buy in bulk and store grain longer-term to get even more value for your purchase. Then consider hydrating grain before milling for better impact.
With the lower cost feed, it will be easier to keep your operation profitable.
Waste Less Grain
There is one potential problem with processing your own grain. Some of the grain you buy gets turned into dust, which is waste. The dust will accumulate at the processing station or in storage bins. Or it will fall on the ground or blow away at the feeding station. Worse, your livestock might actually eat it (more about this later).
Fortunately, a roller mill can help with this. Roller mills produce little dust in processing. In fact, they produce about ⅛ as much dust as a hammer mill. That means that more of the grain you process gets turned into quality feed for your livestock. This efficient feed milling process helps you make the most of the grain you buy and get better returns on your investment.
Have Healthier Livestock--and Workers
But getting blown away in the wind is not the worst thing that could happen to feed dust. When cattle eat grain that's full of dust, they can develop digestive problems, such as ulcers, bloating, and more. This can mean that you spend more time and money dealing with health problems in your livestock. After having spent time and money dealing with sick livestock, you'll also see less gain, which means lower revenue.
And it's not just your cattle that can suffer from feed dust. If you or your workers inhale dust from a hammer mill, you can develop respiratory illnesses, including pneumonia. This means wasted time as people have to recover or work at a lower efficiency because they're sick.
The process of running a hammer mill is traumatic for the machine as well as the grain. This creates high-heat conditions that cause significant wear on the machines. This means that hammer mills require regular maintenance, and that means time waiting for the machine to be repaired and money spent on a mechanic and/or replacement parts.
On the other hand, a roller mill can go a long time without service. Especially thanks to the hardened steel rolls in an Automatic mill, you rarely need to service your roller mill. The failures are rarely traumatic, too. They develop over time, giving you warning that lets you schedule maintenance when it's least intrusive on your schedule.
Spend Less on Power
Power and energy needs can be a highly variable expense at your feedlot. Especially if you run mills with a PTO, the variation in fuel costs can dramatically eat into your profitability.
This is another place where a roller mill can help insulate your operation against cost shocks.
Roller mills use a fraction of the power that hammer mills do, which means that you can process grain more cheaply. It's especially important when we have price spikes in fuel as we have in 2021. This makes it easier to predict your final expenses, and fewer times where you need expensive short-term loans to make it to market day for your cattle.
Let Us Help You Make the Most of Your Mill
At Automatic Equipment Manufacturing, we have been helping farmers and ranchers save time and money with roller mills for nearly 100 years. We have gained wisdom from seeing how operations can use our equipment to weather the uncertainties, shocks, and expenses that have forced many others to sell or abandon their operations. We have also worked with operations of all sizes, from small family farms to huge feedlots, and we make equipment for all of them.
If you would like to learn how an Automatic roller mill can help you save time and money in your livestock operation, please contact us today.