In this contribution a general approach for the derivation of economic weights is given. Economic weights have been derived for two perspectives: maximizing profitability per cow (cow profitability) maximizing profitability per unit of product (product p rofita b ility). Product profitability is equal to costs per unit of product in a one product situation. The economic weights for the two perspectives are identical when product output is restricted. This also holds in a situation with multiple products and one with variation in herd life . Fixed enterprice costs only influence the economic weights when product profitability is used in a situation without a restriction on input or output. Influences of perspective and restrictions are illustrated for a situation where profitability is a function of lactation yield of fat and protein and herd life . Using product profitability the economic weight of fat or protein results from a reduction in costs per unit of product and a change in the ratio of fat to protein. It is concluded that product profitability should be taken as perspective in deriving economic weights.

Johan AM van Arendonk, E. W Brascamp

Proceedings of the World Congress on Genetics Applied to Livestock Production, Volume XIV. Dairy cattle genetics and breeding, adaptation and conservation., , 78–85, 1990
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