Professional service should be considered a top priority for influencing profits on dairy farms, according to dairy supplier DeLaval. “Milk quality and quantity starts with optimal performance of all the milking equipment. We believe that professional preventive maintenance service is a key to achieving good results,” DeLaval Vice President Business Area Aftermarket & Services Tim Nicolaï said.
Fred Fairchild, professor in the Department of Grain Science and Industry at K-State (Kansas State University, United States) puts it this way: “As a general rule, for every dollar spent on preventive maintenance, you will save at least five dollars in subsequent expenses.”
Improvements in herd health and milking plant performance, and reduced stress levels for the cows, are some of the benefits dairy farmers can achieve through an agreement for a programme of scheduled, systematic service, Nicolaï explained.
“That is why we have InService™, a new approach to service launched in 2008. We are delighted to have a number of farmers who are now on their third service agreement and are seeing clear improvements in increased productivity and better udder health,” he said.
One of the DeLaval farmers on his third consecutive InService™ agreement is Dwayne Neal. He and his family run Laureldene Farms in Boyanup, Western Australia, where they milk about 210 cows in a 20 unit plant with ALPRO™ herd management.
“It takes a lot of the worry out of managing the farm. We don’t have to remember to order chemicals or parts; our technician just arrives and does our servicing when it’s due. We know that the plant will be serviced and liners changed at the right time. It also helps us to manage cash flow, because we know when to expect the maintenance charges. As a result the plant works very well,” says Dwayne Neal. “We will definitely be renewing our service agreement again when it is due.”
DeLaval InService™ is designed to cope with a variety of farming systems worldwide, with the flexibility to meet individual farm and farmer requirements.
Efficient service, Nicolaï explains, is also strongly linked to Sustainable Dairy Farming (SDF). “Scheduled service is a very competent way to keep farms running in a sustainable manner, especially as the size and complexity of dairy operations increase. Less waste is accumulated, animal health is better preserved, profits are boosted and fewer emergency call-outs made,” he said.
SDF is a DeLaval initiative to reduce the environmental footprint of farms while improving milk production, farm profitability and the well-being of the people and animals involved.
“InService™ is simple and efficient. It offers a real partnership between the farmer and DeLaval to give our customers peace of mind,” concluded Nicolaï.