CENTRAL DATA COLLECTION & COMMUNICATION FOR THE FUTURE OF DAIRY
Whether you’re milking in a conventional parlor, rotary or robot barn, the amount of data you can collect has multiplied increasingly quickly in recent years. The importance of this data is two-fold: 1) to inform management decisions and 2) to have a means of sharing information about your farm practices to the supply chain and consumer.
For generations, farmers have been implementing the best sustainability and management practices that they know how. In recent years, consumers have started asking for food that is sustainably and responsibly produced. In addition, more, better tools and resources have come to the surface, not only giving names to sustainability practices, but also ways to measure the economic and environmental impact of responsible farming methods.
Recognizing that rising costs, changing consumer trends, environmental pressures, food safety standards and legislation are all challenging the ability of dairy producers to stay profitable, HPR was built for the future of dairy. HPR helps their customers stay competitive, thrive, and understand their role in the food value chain by adapting to and investing in better processes.
The responsibility that dairy farmers have to their animals, their customers and their business can present a challenge in determining solutions that benefit all stakeholders. The most effective specialists and suppliers for your farm can help provide not only the solutions but also the data to share your dairy’s sustainability story.
One common argument against dairy production is that cows are eating food that humans should eat. According to dairy.org, research that shows 80% of what dairy cows eat can’t be consumed by people. This includes byproducts from microbreweries and others, such as almond hulls, cottonseeds, citrus pulp and peel, and corn grain remaining from the production of ethanol. Carefully tacking consumption and waste, paired with recycling, can help convert leery consumers and make a difference to your bottom line.
Another important part of the sustainability and responsibility story is animal welfare. Consumers want to know that the animals who produced their food are treated well. While many consumers have their own ideas of what this should look like, dairy farmers are tasked with showing responsibility in their current practices. Solutions like cow brushes are an easy, visual way to show a consumer that the cows are being raised in a comfortable and suitable environment.
Many other animal welfare practices that have come with new technology, whose benefits are easy to see on paper and in production results for farmers, may not resonate as well with consumers. There is no one “responsibly-produced” seal that can encompass everything that goes into animal care. This is one place where new apps and technology can help fill a gap.
HPR is well-connected to the industry’s best traceability technology. Contact us to learn more.