”It is really mindfulness in its best form”

Linda Thulin, Herd Manager, at Hamra Farm has been part of the DeLaval family since the mid-90’s. Read her story to learn how she increased her knowledge about animal welfare and what has happened at Hamra Farm throughout the years.

Linda graduated high school in 1995 where she studied agriculture and got practical experience from dairy farming, something that really caught her interest. After applying for different jobs, she landed a position as animal keeper at Hamra Farm in the beginning of 1996. “Back then, it was quite different at Hamra. We had no milking robots and I worked long shifts. Now, the advances in technology has improved the work conditions for farmers,” says Linda. 

Linda Thulin

Growing into a leader

After two years at Hamra, Linda decided to study at university to become a molecular biologist. She planned on continue towards a PhD but realised that she missed being with animals, people and having an active lifestyle. During this time, she worked extra at Hamra Farm to get additional funds for her horse. “Right after graduating, I received an offer from Hamra where I would get to have more responsibility for employees. I would work together with the Barn Manager at the time, Henrik Norberg, and it was a great opportunity for me, so I jumped at the chance. Over the years, I got to do more and more of Henrik’s duties as I grew into the role before the entire responsibility was handed over to me in 2015,” says Linda, and she still loves what she does each day.

​​​​​​​“Every day is unique at the farm, as all the routines are mixed with unforeseen events. This makes the job so engaging. Cows are to be inseminated at a specific time and at the same time calves can be born any time of the day – it doesn’t follow a regular schedule. Whenever something comes up, we are happy to be there for our animals. Besides more hands-on work, I focus a lot on long-term planning and strategies to make sure the farm is profitable and that our herd is healthy. I love the perfect mix of manual labour, planning and strategizing. Hamra is really a farm that is in constant development thanks to the cooperation with the developers at DeLaval which makes me think that I will never get tired of this work,” says Linda happily.

Building trust

And this work suits Linda perfectly, as she is a very compassionate person who loves animals. “The lovely thing with cows is that they are friendly and curious. I believe that we, humans, who are stressed a lot would feel better if we adjusted ourselves to the cows’ rhythm. You create a bond with each cow, and you have to let her take her time, let her stop and smell you, look each other in the eyes and see how she feels. It is really mindfulness in its best form. Even though they are much larger than I am, they follow directions and that is a good sign of mutual trust. We give her the things she needs, and she gives so much in return. I am proud of working at a company like DeLaval, that shares my beliefs and values, as I am keen on animal welfare and environment,” Linda says.

Going forward, there are many projects – in parallel with the daily operations – that Linda is looking forward to. “We are in the beginning of building for even better animal welfare here at the farm, and we will use much of DeLaval’s latest products and technology. We are adding more animals to the herd, so I have much planning around that to oversee, which is exciting. Together with the new implementations on the farm, we will focus on environment and production in the herd so we will be a top performing farm,” Linda concludes.

Thank you, Linda, for sharing your story and for your great commitment and passion for your work – very inspiring!