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Milking capacity and economic viability of automatic milking systems: limits when used on family farms

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Paper number  024227,  2002 ASAE Annual Meeting . (doi: 10.13031/2013.10533) @2002
Authors:   R. Kaufmann, H. Ammann, M. Schick
Keywords:   Automatic milking system, capacity, family farms, economics of labour

Economic pressure is forcing European family farms to expand milk production. With conventional milking methods, they come up against workload limits. Automatic milking systems (AMS) are a solution. If manpower is the principal factor limiting increased output in conventional milking, the cows behaviour is one factor determining the usage limits of AMS. As yet there are few principles on which to base an assessment of potential applications, particularly from the viewpoint of economic viability. This presentation deals with these related issues and draws conclusions on the needs for further development.

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