Dairy Integrated Farm Management Systems

The Rezare Systems team coordinated this project on behalf of Innovation Waikato. We sought to demonstrate the financial benefits to New Zealand dairy farmers from careful selection and adoption of new technologies.

Our demonstration made use of the family farm of David and Raewyn Bennett near Walton in the Waikato. A steering group comprising representatives from AgResearch, DairyNZ, Innovation Waikato, LIC and Fonterra met regularly with the farmers to review progress and assess the financial and operational benefits of new technologies proposed for the farm.

About the Farm

The farm as it was during the project:

  • Based near Walton, Matamata in the Waikato region
  • 232 hectares, including the 175ha milking platform
  • Milking 365 days, with 920 cows at peak
  • Four full-time and one part time staff member
  • A Production System 5 in DairyNZ language – making use of imported feed and own maize silage throughout the season
  • 500,000+ kg Milk Solids produced annually (about 500kg/cow or 2,800kg/ha)

Technologies

Several years later many of the following technologies are passé, the accepted requirements for a high-performing farm. However, the technologies implemented had a substantial effect in supporting David and Raewyn as they increased productivity and profit on their farm.

  • At home: MINDA Pro herd management software, Telecom Xtra Wireless broadband, and Resolution farm mapping and planning software.
  • On the farm: Agricom high performance pastures with AR37 endophyte, Rural Link on-farm wireless networks, Hi-Tech irrigation systems, Batt Latch automatic gate releases, and a Farm Environmental Plan prepared by Environment Waikato (now Waikato Regional Council).
  • In the Dairy Shed: LIC Protrack dairy automation system, Gallagher walk-through weighing, Milfos milk meters, DTS vat wrap and monitoring service, and Danfos Mahana Blue heat recovery unit.

Funded by New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, the project involved in-kind contributions from AgResearch, Agricom, Gallagher Group, Danfos, DTS, Environment Waikato, Hi-Tech Irrigation, LIC, Milfos, Ravensdown Fertiliser, Rural Link, and Telecom.

Related documents:

  • Presentation to Pioneer Conference 2006
  • National Fieldays 2006 Slide Show
  • Walton Farm Video (2006)

Older related material:

  • Programme Visioning Workshop (2005)
  • Situation Analysis (2005)
  • Livestock RFID Seminar (2005)
  • Traceability Databases Review (2005)