DeLaval sets new standard for milking

Stockholm, Sweden, 14 October 2021 ─ DeLaval sets a new standard in how cows are milked by responding to the natural milk flow from the cow ─ saving time and increasing animal welfare.

By adapting the applied vacuum to the milk flow profile of each cow, milking times can be reduced by up to 10%, supporting good udder health and animal welfare. The first two new DeLaval technologies are launched as part of DeLaval Flow-Responsive™ Milking: Flow-Adjusted Vacuum and Flow-Adjusted Stimulation.  

DeLaval has been credited with developing the first successful vacuum operated milking machine in 1917. With the launch of DeLaval Flow-Responsive™ Milking, DeLaval has once again created a new standard for precise and efficient milking. “The vacuum level is normally set to compromise between the risk of over-milking, at the beginning and end of milking when milk-flow is lower, and under-milking, during most of the milking time when the cow has more milk available than the compromised vacuum level can extract. This means that with the traditional one vacuum level system, the speed of the milking process is limited not by the cow’s genetics or available milk, but by the vacuum and stimulation settings of the system,” explains Dr. Carl Oskar Paulrud, Dairy Development Director at DeLaval. 

DeLaval is basing the new technology on many years of research. “There have been significant improvements in dairy genetics, farm practices, feed management, the understanding of cow physiology and behaviour, and milk synthesis. We have used this and taken the milking process to a new level by keeping the push from the cow and the pull of the milking-machine in best possible balance,” says Bettina Krausbauer, Director for Milk-Extraction at DeLaval. 

DeLaval is basing the new technology on many years of research. “There have been significant improvements in dairy genetics, farm practices, feed management, the understanding of cow physiology and behaviour, and milk synthesis. We have used this and taken the milking process to a new level by keeping the push from the cow and the pull of the milking-machine in best possible balance,” says Bettina Krausbauer, Director for Milk-Extraction at DeLaval.

The first two products to be launched as part of DeLaval Flow-Responsive™ Milking – Flow-Adjusted Vacuum and Flow-Adjusted Stimulation – are delivered for rotaries and parlours. New sensors and regulator valves, plus a special software, allow them to respond to the actual milk-flow of each cow and adjust the level of the vacuum accordingly. 

Improved farm efficiency and udder health 
The ability to adjust vacuum levels means that DeLaval Flow-Responsive Milking can speed up milking and give clear benefits for udder and teat health. “This can truly improve the efficiency on farm. As of now, close to 40 million milkings have been performed with Flow-Adjusted Vacuum and the cluster-on time has been reduced on average 20 seconds per milking. Additionally, working hours in the milking system are shortened,” states Dr. Martin Wiedemann, Cluster Solution Manager at DeLaval. 

Three recent studies confirm the advantages of the Flow-Responsive Milking approach. “A milk flow-controlled vacuum, being an increased vacuum during peak milk flow, results in a higher milk flow and therefore shorter milking duration thus supporting good udder-health,” state Prof. Dr. D. Reinemann (University of Madison-Wisconsin, US), Prof. Dr. ir. H. Hogeveen (Wageningen University, NL) and Prof. Dr. R. Bruckmaier (University of Bern, CH) in their studies. 

The scientific results have also been reflected in practice. “The cups-on time has been reduced by up to 50 seconds per milking for high-yielding cows,” says Henrik Döhrmann, Manager at one of the first European pilot farms. 

The vacuum monitoring and notifications are presented in the new DeLaval Alerts application, allowing milking systems, equipped with Flow-Responsive Milking, to be monitored remotely. The digital solution will also allow easy activations of new updates as they become available.  

Further reading including scientific proof: https://en.delavalflowresponsive.com/ 

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