Saturday, 14 October 2017 08:55

Waikato rotaries central in 10,000-cow China farm

Written by 
Twin Waikato Milking System rotaries on the China farm. Twin Waikato Milking System rotaries on the China farm.

Two 80-BAIL Waikato Milking Systems (WMS) rotary platforms are at the heart of a new 10,000 cow dairy farm in China.

The 400ha farm in Huaxian, in Shaanxi province northwest of Shanghai, is owned by the big dairy processor Bright Dairies. Its animal welfare and processing standards are said to be among the world’s most stringent.

Just back from visiting the new facility, WMS’s country manager China, David Morris, says the installation is one of several it has built on Bright Dairies’ farms.

“Bright Dairies was formed in 1911 and is today among the largest milk processors in China; its farms provide milk for a broad range of fresh milk, yoghurt and dairy products for the domestic market.

“Trust is big in China and you earn that by delivering what you promise. We put huge effort into building and sustaining relationships built on trust and brand integrity.

“The innovation and manufacturing standards of our products and the depth of our customer service complement the standards Bright Dairies applies to every aspect of its farm operations,” Morris says.

Dairying in China has evolved in response to environmental challenges, and the standards new conversions must meet are among the most stringent in the world – tougher than in New Zealand, says Morris.

All animals intensively farmed are housed year-round in US-style barns where they are fed alfalfa, silage and corn, some of it grown on the farm but mostly imported from the US and Australia.

“About 75% of feed is brought to the farm – 60% coming from the USA – and thousands of tonnes of hay are imported from Australia each year.”

The cow barns have no walls and a flat roof; optimum temperatures prevail year-round.

“Dairying land is leased from the Chinese government; getting consent to convert to dairying is via an extensive regulatory process applying to animal welfare, preservation of the environment, biosecurity, etc.”

The new installation at the Huaxian Bright Ecological Demonstration Dairy Farm is the latest WMS rotary platform in China.

The two concrete Orbit rotary platforms, commissioned in October 2016, now milk 3000 cows three times daily, 365 days a year. As the infrastructure builds and matures, the herd size will increase to a maximum of 10,000 cows.

Cow are milked 20 hours a day and the plant is cleaned during the other four hours. By law, Chinese dairy plants must be washed every six hours and the dairy is set up so the platforms continue to rotate during washing.

The new dairy has milk metering and each cow is fitted with a pedometer that provides milk yield and activity data fed to herd management software. The system also has automatic sorting and weighing.

Morris says all milk produced in China must be able to be traced back to the farm and the animal.

More like this

Dairy conversion era over – expert

The days of rapid, large-scale dairy conversions in New Zealand are at an end, says Waikato Milking Systems chief executive NZ Campbell Parker.

Sheep, goat dairy farmers must aim to export

Waikato Milking Systems product and project manager Andy Geissmann believes there’s plenty of scope for Kiwis working in the emerging sheep and goat dairy sectors to export.

WMS spreads wings into effluent

Waikato Milking Systems (WMS) will use Fieldays to promote its expansion beyond milking systems into effluent and environmental products.

Featured

 

Limited feed puts ewes at risk

Severe feed shortages in parts of the country mean many ewes are on a nutritional knife-edge heading into lambing and could be at risk of developing metabolic disorders.

Jack’s unique solution

Jason Jack was left with severe spinal injuries after a wakeboarding accident when he was 29, but that hasn’t stopped him getting out and about in difficult environments.

National

$10 payout!

A small but select group of Fonterra farmers are on the cusp of setting a new milk payout record.

The migrant workers dilemma

Dairy farmers want more Kiwi workers, but they also want relaxed immigration restrictions. So, what's the problem?

Producing milk, the Miraka way

The goal of Māori-owned dairy company Miraka, near Taupo, is to become the most sustainable dairy company in the world.

Machinery & Products

Landpower invests in cow central

One of Australasia’s largest, privately-owned farm machinery distributors, Landpower is building a new $10 million complex adjacent to Hamilton Airport.

Maize moisture in a moment

With forage maize playing such an important part of the New Zealand fodder supply chain, a useful hand-held moisture measuring…

» The RNG Weather Report

» Latest Print Issues Online

Milking It

A ticking timebomb?

There could be another dairy health scare brewing in China and this one starts in our backyard.

Please explain

Does anyone in the Government understand the essential role St John Ambulance has in our society?

» Connect with Dairy News

» eNewsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter