A little while ago I met a man named Greg who owns a robotic dairy. I found this fascinating and as soon as I could I headed off to find out more.
Greg Dennis’ grandparents bought the Scenic Rim Dairy Farm at Tamrookum near Beaudesert in south east Queensland in the 1930s, when cows were milked by hand and milk was delivered by horse and cart.
Much has changed in the dairy industry but Greg and his family have always been passionate about producing the best milk they can from happy, healthy cows.
In 2010 they were the first in Queensland to install the LELY Robotic Dairy system. They believe it is less stressful for the cows and it increases productivity.
Here is the robotic milking system…with cow.
The cows love it . They come in to the shed to be milked when it suits them ( a tasty snack keeps them busy while they are being milked) There is no specified milking time and they don’t have to be herded in. They really do stroll in and line up to be milked. Some are bit eager and push their friends out of the way to get in first.
The milking machine is programmed to recognise each cow. Sterilised brushes first wash the teats and the soft action of the brushes stimulates the cows to ‘let down’ their milk.
Next the robot attaches the suction cups to the teats and each section of the udder is milked separately. The udder is scanned by a laser to record any changes to the udder to enable a good connection each time.
Then the teats are washed and moisturied and the cow heads of to the pasture. On the way out she gets a nice back scratch.
On hot days there is a sprinkler system in the shed so the girls can cool off when they feel like it. They stand on soft rubber matting which is kind to their feet.
The Dennis family now produce, process, bottle and distribute their own Scenic Rim 4 Real Milk. The milk is pasteurised and bottled on the farm and delivered to outlets within a 2 hour drive from the dairy. It tastes better and is better for you, as there has been minimal processing. It is the next best thing to buying directly from the farm.
The family run tours of the dairy and I can report that it is interesting and fun. The cows are placid and calm and seem to have a lovely cow life.
I lived on a dairy farm for a few years when my son was little and I love the taste of milk straight from the cow…much better than over processed milk.
We live within their delivery zone so will be looking out for it. They also produce delicious cheese and will soon add butter to their list of products.
Take a look at their website for much more information…