With the introduction of Fonterra’s new 2030 strategy and our major dairy companies offering farmers…
Early mastitis detection pays dividends.
With the introduction of Fonterra’s new 2030 strategy and our major dairy companies offering farmers financial incentives for best practice farming, finding a solution to our dairy industry’s most widespread animal health issue is crucial.
That’s the message from Bovonic Business Development Manager Tom Fitzgerald.
“Mastitis is estimated to cost New Zealand dairy farmers at least $200-400 million every year,” says Tom.
“The disease cuts farm profitability by reducing milk production and increases somatic cell count, which can incur costly milk quality grades.
“Mastitis also forces you to treat, withhold, and cull cows and costs you time and energy trying to find it in your herd”.
“For the average New Zealand farmer, this can all add up to more than $50,000 a year. With
dairy company incentives now on the table, the cost of mastitis could be even greater.”
Three of the incentive payments currently running are:
- Fonterra’s Co-operative Difference payment, which offers an additional 10 cents per kgMS, supplemented by an extra 2 cents through the Nestlé best practice payment.
- Synlait’s Lead with Pride Programme provides an extra 10 cents per kgMS.
- Miraka’s Te Ara Miraka Farming Excellence Programme extends an extra 7 cents per kgMS.
Tapping into these premiums may also require farmers to start taking steps to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions.
Tom says there are a number of ways detecting mastitis early can help farmers achieve best practice and increase their chances of securing a premium for their milk.
“Early detection can reduce the need for antibiotics, improve milk quality, promote cow longevity, and enhance feed and production efficiency.
“Dairy farmers need new and innovative solutions to help them tackle these challenges and there are lots of exciting developments in the pipeline”.
“The key will be making sure these solutions are simple and cost-effective so that we don’t add to farmers’ stress or put extra pressure on their bottom lines.
“We’re proud to offer our QuadSense mastitis detection technology to farmers as one solution that can make a real difference. Getting on top of mastitis makes sense whichever way you look at it.”