Dairy farming belongs to a class of agriculture business, where the production of milk and milk products is done on a long-term basis. India is proved to top in Milk production which contributes 40% of the world’s production. There are 150 Million dairy farmers in India, mostly they are small farmers. We have dairy businesses ranging from small farmers, owning just three or four cows to industries producing tonnes of milk each day, say Amul.
For many of us, the day starts and ends with dairy products. We use products that we buy from various sources. It is essential to have some knowledge about the quality of ingredients and how it is being processed. And of course, dairy farming has taken a swing due to its increase in customers and technology plays a major role in increasing its production.
Let’s have a look at the important one’s among the recent technologies used in the dairy industry and how it affects its quality and production
The first thing to be concerned about is how healthy the cattle is.
Smart Ear Tags
Fitting a tracking device that has a microchip, just like how our smartwatch works, attached to the cow’s ear, collar, leg or tail. With this, farmers can track the cattle’s health, activities like reproduction, and overall wellness.
Why should it be used?
- Animal Identification made easy
- Heat detection is used to increase pregnancy rates by monitoring silent heats and determining the best time for insemination.
- To isolate and look after sick cows, lameness identification, and general health monitoring.
- Calving identification is needed for the new calf to enter into the system and to track live births.
- Herd monitoring using GPS location tracking.
- Early Mastitis (breast infection) can be diagnosed.
- Integrate with the farm database to keep track of any drugs or procedures used.
- Rumination monitoring is used to keep track of how long they have been feeding to monitor their health and control the total feed rations for the herd.
- Identify animals who are experiencing heat or cold stress.
Eco-Friendly Milk Booth System
Even now, we can see that plastic is widely used for packing milk and milk products. As we consume them every day, they can make a huge part of the non-degradable litter. We see that plastic affects animals a lot if they consume them. This has to be changed and should be made eco-friendly. But still, some milk dairies have set up an Eco-friendly milk booth system at several remote locations, where the products can be accessed without any use of plastic.
Cashless digital milk booth system is also developing which is seen as a new way to avoid people gathering, allows to fill milk automatically, and digital payment methods.
This is seen as a smart move to digitize our place and also improves our environment, improves quality, automatic refilling, and mainly reduces plastic usage.
Sensor System for Milk Quality
Milk, the base of any milk product, should be mandatorily checked for its quality. Sensors are used for the detection of kinds of mastitis and abnormal milk by an epidemiological pattern. Abnormal milk is said to be a result of clinical mastitis, but it can also be due to various factors. So the particular cow with such a defect will further undergo treatment.
The main objective is to pick out the affected cow, cure them, find the defective product and discard them.
Also now, an Automatic milking system is used which has also made a drastic change in milk production. Manually milking the herd two times a day, which is tiring has changed by using vacuum tubes to extract milk from the udder. So now, even milking is done about four to five times a day.
Lely Juno family, a series of robots that are used to provide labor services such as milking and supplying food to cattle.
Many people opt for dairy substituents for various reasons like, allergic to cow’s milk protein, maybe they want a dairy-free diet, or if they are vegan. So many plant-based alternatives are emerging and are also proved to be rich in essential nutrients.
They are almond milk, rice milk, soy milk, coconut milk, and plenty of other options. They also provide similar calories, proteins, and the advantage is the high amount of carbohydrates present in them. But the majority of these alternatives lack nutritional value whereas having active health-promoting compounds, which are attracted by health-conscious customers.
This plays a major trend in product development and has brought differences to the dairy industry. The majority of these milk alternative products are lacking nutritional balance compared to bovine milk, while they contain functionally active health-promoting components that attract health-conscious consumers.
Bovine somatotropin is a bovine growth hormone, an FDA-approved animal drug that helps increase the milk production of dairy cows. The somatotropin developed naturally in cattle is the basis for this drug. Somatotropin is a protein hormone produced in the pituitary gland of animals and is required for normal growth, development, and health.,
The drug is approved in the name Posilac, and the cattle can be injected with this. It is proven that milk and meat from Posilac injected cows are safe and cause no harm.
Modern consumers have become conscious about flavours, even on dairy products. Therefore, dairy industries try and come up with different innovations which could attract dairy product lovers and increase their profit.
For example, flavoured milk, milkmaids, low-fat milk, creams, condensed milk, and so on. These have even created competition with other carbonated drinks and products.
Many industries have expanded their brand by producing desserts, beverages, spreads, creams.
With the increase in innovations and automation happening in the dairy industry, every process is enhanced in a healthy and profitable manner. A sustainable future depends on continued progress in environmental stewardship, advances in on-farm technologies, and continued investment in science on dairy’s health benefits.