Sunday, January 13, 2013

Milking machine is not only cost-effective but also labour-friendly

Milking machines installed in Sirugamani cow project

“Milking machine is not only cost-effective but also labour-friendly” K.Devendran shared his experience in Milking machine recently introduced in SEVAI-OFI-Cow volunteers’ project of Sirugamani. K.Devendran and French Volunteer Hugues are closely working in maintaining the cow farm in Sirugamani.K.Devendran introduced the milking machine to SHG Federation leaders headed by Vanitha about small dairy farm.K.Devendran further said,” Milking machine has greatly reduced his overhead costs and gets good returns in investing in a milking machine.”The milking process is the collection of tasks specifically devoted to extracting milk from an animal. This process may be broken down into several sub-tasks: collecting animals before milking, routing animals into the parlour, inspection and cleaning of teats, attachment of milking equipment to teats, and often massaging the back of the udder to relieve any held back milk, extraction of milk, removal of milking equipment, routing of animals out of the parlour. In fact all activities must be scheduled around the milking process on the dairy farm. Machine milking is gradually being adopted because it reduces labour and performs a better quality milking job than hand milking. Milking machines have many advantages over hand milking. A cow should be milked within 7 minutes. Machine milking on the other hand is very fast such that all the milk will have been removed by the end of this time. Effective milking has a direct bearing on the long term milk yield of the cow. It has been proved that with time cows that are not completely milked gradually reduce milk production whereas those that are completely milked increases milk yield. The importance of complete milking therefore cannot be over-emphasized.  Although the cost of installing milking machines is high, investing in a good milking machine is a good decision if conditions allow, farmers with 5 to 10 cows can invest on simple milking machines to replace the inefficient and labor intensive method of manual milking. The farmer is freed from the milking process and associated rigid schedule, and labour is devoted to supervision of animals, feeding, etc. The milking process is consistent for every cow and every visit, and is not influenced by different persons milking the cows. Although milking machines copy suckling by the calf, in a way machine milking is different from hand milking or calf suckling. A constant vacuum is applied on the teat to create a pressure difference across the teat canal and keep the machine attached to the cow. The vacuum congests the teats and squeezes milk from the teat. Atmospheric air is allowed once per second to collapse and relieve congestion around the end of the teats creating a pulsation. This pulsation is important as it massages, relieves and prevents damage to the teats”.-Govin

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