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How robotic milking systems are changing the face of dairy farming in North America Part One

November 9, 2012

The growth of robotic milking systems in North America

Have you considered switching your dairy farm to a robotic system yet? Chances are, if you anticipate being in this industry for the long term, you are going to have to make this decision at some point.

Europe leads the way as far as robotic-milking technology is concerned. The first commercial system was installed way back in 1992. By the end of 2000, there were around 750 robotic milking systems in operation across the continent.

In North America, meanwhile, the first robotic system was only installed in 1997—in Ontario—and the technology was slow to catch on. However, that is beginning to change. Today, more than 600 farms robotically milk almost 75,000 cows, and more and more farms across North America are investing in robotic milking for three major reasons:

For the vast majority of farms that have embraced the robotic technology produced by industry experts such as DeLaval or Lely, robotic milking has resulted in benefits such as:

In many instances, the cost of initial installation of a robotic system has been recouped through higher production and considerable labor savings. While there were initial fears that cows would be less content or more prone to sickness or disease because they are receiving less hands-on management, studies have shown that this is not the case.

In our next article, we’ll explore what you can expect to gain from a robotic milking system, the old tasks you will continue to need to do—and the new ones you will need to learn.

Jamesway Farm Equipment is a leader in the design, manufacture and supply of manure application systems, manure cleaning systems and herd feeding systems. For more information, contact Jamesway today.



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