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asked in Estimation by (1.2k points) | 460 views

3 Answers

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Answering this question from a pure economic point of view.

Assumptions and Inferences: 

Total population of canada: ~40 million


Milk is consumed by people of all ages. Considering 2-3% of the population does not consume dairy products due to different reasons (lactose intolerance, vegan lifestyle, allergy, dislike, etc). This means ~39 million people in Canada consume milk in one form or another

Cow here refers only to the female which is used mainly for milk production. Meat/beef is obtained from the bull, which is not included in this estimation.

Per capita consumption of milk is about 0.3L per day. Averaging for throughout the year, per capita consumption of dairy products: butter/cheese, etc is about 20grams per day. It takes about 5 litres of milk to produce 1kg of cheese/butter. Therefore, it adds to 0.1L milk per day. In total, per capita consumption of milk (milk + dairy products), is about 0.4L per day. In total, the daily demand for milk is ~15.5 million litres (39 million * 0.4L).


On average, a cow produces 15-20 litres of milk per day. Therefore, the total number of cows in Canada amounts to 0.7-1 million. (15.5 million/20 or 15.5 million/15)


answered by (14 points)
0 votes
population of canada is 40M

People consume dairy products - butter, cheese, milk, icrecream. On a daily basis average person uses 800 ml of milk / milk product (average calculated kids about 1000 ml, adults 500 ml). Average family 2 adults 3 kids = 4000/5 = 800 ml

Average cow gives 20 litres of milk per day if she is lactating. 90% of cows in farms are kept lactating to keep production high.

so one lactating cow can serve 20000/800 => 200/8 => 100/4 => 50/2 => 25 people.

40 000 000 / 25 = 1.6 M cows. this is 90% of cows.

so total is 1.6M*1.1 = 1.76M cows. ~~ about 1.5 to 2 M cows.
answered by
–1 vote

One way to estimate the number of cows would be to think about the total number of farms in Canada and average number of cows per farm in Canada.

Let’s assume that there are 10,000 farms in Canada. And the average maximum number of cows per farm is estimated to be 60. Assuming the Canadian farms are generally operating at 80% utilization, we can say the total number of cows in Canada is:

10,000 x 60 x 80% = 480,000

answered by
It’s a good estimate.
Why are we using utilization of the farm, to calculate the number of cows in Canada?
this question seems weird to me, because how could one make educated assumption on how many farms exists in Canada direct? are all farms has cows? if we could make direct assumption of #cow farms, is it just equivalent to assume # of cow?

my thoughts is taking an inference approach, consider how much milk people has to consume, and infer to # of female cow then to whole population

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