Bar 20 is ensuring production of high quality, healthy milk by keeping the herd healthy
A California-based dairy has installed dispensing equipment and a foamer-sprayer as part of their continuous improvement goals to increase efficiency.
The United States is the world’s second largest milk producer with California accounting for 1/5th of the country’s total milk production. According to the California Department of Farming and Agriculture (CDFA) and the Milk Advisory Board (CMAB), the state produced 40.4 billion pounds of milk in 2010, equalling $5.9 billion in annual sales with the dairy farms generating nearly 450,000 fulltime jobs annually.
Bar 20 Dairy, located in Kerman, California, is one of the largest dairy farms in the state, supplying nearly 15 tanker-trucks of milk, each hauling 7,000 gallons to a trusted, family owned and independent dairy brand, Producers Milk.
Since 1932, Producers Milk, Fresno, California, has built and maintained a reputation of providing some of the highest quality milk available, which they attribute to their unwavering commitment to ‘healthy, happier cows’. Studies have shown that minimising stress and providing proper nutrition can enhance a herd’s resistance to bacterial infections such as mastitis.
To achieve this, the company grows its own natural feed for the herd and has full-time dieticians on staff to quickly adjust the food supply to meet changing needs of the heard. Rubber mats line the ramps cows walk on to ensure their hooves don’t hurt while standing in line. Besides, none of the cows in the Producer’s Dairy family are ever treated with growth hormones, and the resulting milk doesn’t include antibiotics or artificial hormones.
In addition to the very important emphasis on a stress-free environment and comfortable accommodations, farms must also concentrate on developing stringent procedures for maintaining clean and sanitised dairy equipment to ensure proper udder health for their herd.
As Manager of the Bar 20 Dairy, Stan Marks oversees all daily operations associated with the care of cows and the production of the high quality milk product. The farm cares for more than 17,000 head of cattle including 8,600 milking cows. The high herd count requires 24-hour operations while care needs to be taken to minimise risk of infection.
Stan explains that his biggest concern each day is caring for the cows the best way it can be done, with the least cost, and the least amount of labour, which means he is constantly looking to improve the quality of their cows’ environment.
As part of their continuous improvement goals, Bar 20 recently implemented a new DeLaval Iodozyme dispensing system for their teat dip program to replace the existing manual system. Before each milking, cows are treated with the fresh, fast acting iodine based dip that prevents the spread of mastitis.
The newly designed DeLaval Iodozyme dispensing system mixes water with concentrated chemical on demand at the time of use, eliminating the space requirements and potential hazards associated with traditional methods.
The Iodozyme dispensing system represents the first partnership of its kind between DeLaval, the world’s leading dairy farming equipment manufacturer, and Hydro Systems Company, Cincinnati, Ohio, the world’s leading independent manufacturer of chemical proportioning, injecting and dosing equipment.
The Iodozyme dispensing system utilises the Hydro Systems MiniDos non-electric water driven injector to accurately mix the desired amount of concentrate with water. The fast delivery method further improves the quick kill time associated with the Iodozyme product, by eliminating the possibility for the chemical to lose potency while sitting in the holding tank, which was possible when utilising traditional methods. A key benefit from the new process is the consistency of Iodozyme during every infection prevention treatment.
In addition to the dispensing system, Bar 20 Dairy also installed the Hydro Systems FoamMaster 890 foamer/sprayer system for cleaning their rotary milkers. The previous method involved the use of chlorinated cleaning solutions with buckets and brushes, which was time-consuming.
The FoamMaster is used to spray the foaming cleaner on the rotary milkers and the process involves a little scrubbing for complete cleaning of the equipment.
To avoid the spread of bacteria, each cow is wiped dry with a clean cloth towel after each application of the Iodozyme pre-dip. A new towel is used for each cow at each milking with the used towels cleaned and sanitised using a Hydro automatic laundry system.
According to Stan, the dairy is able to save about three hours a day by eliminating the mixing involved with teat dips, the use of the FoamMaster on the two rotary milkers, and the adoption of the laundry system.
Over the course of a year, this additional time is substantial, and helps to keep the cost of Producers’ products down and their customers happy. By implementing simple changes to the process, Bar 20 and Producers Milk have taken another step to ensuring production of high quality, healthy milk, and more importantly, ensuring their focus remains ‘wholly cows’.
HydroNova is a world-leading manufacturer and supplier of proportioning and dispensing systems serving multiple industries including animal health, food service, commercial cleaning, automotive care and water treatment.