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

Citation:  Pp. 059-065 in Fifth International Dairy Housing Proceedings of the 29-31 January 2003 Conference (Fort Worth, Texas USA)  701P0203.(doi:10.13031/2013.11603)
Authors:   P. Lundqvist, M. Stäl and S. Pinzke
Keywords:   Dairy production, working conditions, ergonomics, milking

When milking cows in stanchion barns, milkers use various working postures and movements that involve walking, sitting, rising, squatting, kneeling, stooping, bending twisting and stretching. They must do this while holding a load of 3-6 kg (cluster, teat cups) in one hand under the cow's udder at a relatively long distance from the body. This is still the usual working situation for many farmers and farm workers in Swedish dairy production. An increasing part of the Swedish dairy farms have now loose-housing system with parlor milking, which reduces a lot of the ergonomic stress.

On the other hand there is a transition to large-scale milk production which involves new type of problems. An increasing number of the milkers and the relief personnel now working in dairy farming are young women who may have less physical strength than men. Additional research is needed to obtain data necessary for planning of safer and better dairy barns, in which all men or women can work. This paper is a short review of our research conducted over the past 20 years, with some analysis and recommendations for the future.

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