Each October, Progressive Dairy’s editorial team searches for the coolest new products, ideas and innovations in the dairy industry at World Dairy Expo in Madison, Wisconsin. 2022’s show toted the theme “Essential Elements,” and our team found several new things to assist with the essentials of dairy life. Here’s what Progressive Dairy Editors Lora Bender, Jenn Coyne, Katie Coyne, Kimmi Devaney, Joy Hendrix, Jenna Hurty-Person, Karen Lee, Matti McBride and Audrey Schmitz found during their time at the event.
Edge, DBA survey identifies pain points for producers
Glass milk bottles filled with marbles in each one depicted producers’ gravest concerns at World Dairy Expo. As producers walked through the exhibition hall at the show, they were encouraged to take part in a survey at the booth of Edge Dairy Farmer Cooperative and the Dairy Business Association, sharing what their top pain point was as dairy producers. The pain point topics included labor, regulation, federal order system, input costs, sustainability and labeling. At the end of the trade show Thursday, labor and input costs were the leading worries for dairy producers participating in this survey.
Edge is a leading cooperative that serves to be a voice for dairy producers on federal policies, as well as fulfilling the requirements of the Federal Milk Marketing Order as a verification cooperative. DBA is a nonprofit organization made up of dairy producers, processors and business partners to boost Wisconsin’s dairy industry.
—Progressive Dairy Editor Jenn Coyne
MilKey – handheld milk analyzer
Labby – a dairy information and data company – has introduced the newest version of their milk analyzer – in handheld form. A quick draw from your milk sample into a receiving unit sends analytics to your cellphone or tablet within seconds. Gauge somatic cell count and fat and protein percentages at ease. An app accompanies the tester, equipped with Bluetooth technology for easy pairing. The handheld device can be used in a lab or on a dairy – giving you real-time results quickly to aid in management decisions.
—Progressive Dairy Editor Matti McBride
With many regions experiencing higher than usual summer temperatures, keeping cows cool and comfortable in the warmer months can be a challenge. A new product by Topcool and inBarn called BARNEYE aims to improve cow comfort through precision cooling, while also reducing water and electricity usage.
The vision soaking system utilizes cameras to monitor cow positioning at the feed lane and activates nozzles individually whenever a cow is present.
By reducing the time water from misters and soakers is flowing without a cow present, the vision soaking through cow positioning capabilities and the automation of a series of devices can save up to 60% in water and 10% in electricity by utilizing state-of-the-art technology.
The system is designed to allow for simple retrofits onto existing feed lane soaker systems. Additionally, a multitude of controllers and barn equipment can be integrated into the BARNEYE system to enhance its capabilities in the barn.
—Progressive Dairy Editor Kimmi Devaney
ProBelt 450 round baler from New Holland
This new commercial baler can produce up to 10,000 bales of hay per year and boasts a 25-knife cutting system. It has a drop floor to assist when a wad of hay needs to be pushed through, eliminating the need to stop and manually get the hay through. To reduce periodic maintenance, automatic chain oiling and banked grease zerks are standard. These balers deliver an intuitive user interface with advanced ISOBUS electronics. This product is available to order and will be delivered for 2023 hay harvesting.
—Progressive Dairy Editor Katie Coyne
Forage harvester with a unique engine
John Deere displayed its 9500 self-propelled forage harvester that boasts several new features with the producer in mind. The most notable feature would be the 18.0-liter engine that is designed to synchronize engine speed with crop flow and power needs to keep crop throughput consistent. The engine uses less fuel overall and has no DEF requirement. The service life of the engine can extend to 750 hours to give producers more valuable time in the field and out of the shop.
Other features on the harvester include a new spout design to eliminate overflow and operator visibility through a camera for easy viewing, as well as ComfortGard cab sound-deafening technology to reduce long-term exposure to noise for the operator.
—Progressive Forage Managing Editor Joy Hendrix
Cargill’s claw machine
To promote its new dairy Max nutrition software solution designed to provide more precision to a dairy’s nutrition program, Cargill had a claw machine at its booth in the exhibition hall. World Dairy Expo attendees took turns using their own precision placement skills for a chance to win a prize.
The newest version of the software program uses a herd’s real-time digestion profile to deliver a tailor-made ration, while optimizing the use of on-farm ingredients.
—Progressive Dairy Managing Editor Karen Lee
NeoSpectra scanner and Labstore
Make instant decisions for feed rations using the handheld NeoSpectra scanner device that brings immediate analysis of forages, feeds and ingredients. This portable solution is a great alternative to sending feed samples to the lab and allows you to go out and instantly check your feed’s moisture, protein, NDF, fat, starch and more. With instant access to the nutritional content of feeds and ingredients, dairy producers can create consistent rations time and time again.
In addition to the scanner, the NeoSpectra LabStore is a marketplace for near-infrared (NIR) calibrations and offers thousands of prediction models for common products such as hays, silages, grains, feeds from industry leaders such as Dairyland Laboratories, Nutricontrol Labs and Aunir.
To use the scanner, one would start by searching for the feed ingredient or forage they plan to scan in the app on their tablet or phone. They would then put the scanner in contact with the sample they wish to analyze. The program will run five scans, and after each individual scan, the device is moved to a different area of feed. It will then average the five scans together to produce the results. The portal automatically stores all the results and offers reports and visualizations to see how parameters trend over time.
—Progressive Dairy Editor Audrey Schmitz
As labor continues to be a top concern on dairy producer’s minds, Green Source Automation has introduced revolutionary advancements in rotary dairy automation with RotaryMATE.
A robotic arm already used in the automotive production lines has been designed to automate the pre-dip and wiper positions by performing teat cleaning, teat sanitizing, teat stimulation and teat wiping at speeds up to 4.2 seconds per stall. This EXPSplus can now automate two stations instead of one at almost the same cost, doubling the potential return on investment.
The robot’s camera uses VisiMAX technology to let the robot see in real-time 3D, analyzing teat location 20 times per second and allows pinpoint accuracy in pre-dip application. The robot brushes remove debris from the teats and udder, and as the brushes grab onto the teats, they also perform automatic pre-stimulation which can lead to faster milk let down.
The economics of automation with RotaryMATE are significant and include labor savings, reduced chemical expenses and the almost complete elimination of laundry costs. The first EXPSplus installation is milking over 5,600 cows three times per day with only two milkers on-site, at a rate of over 325 cows per man per hour.
Cost savings are only the tip of the iceberg. Customers have discovered the robots can operate with a consistency unachievable by humans. They not only reduce farmers’ needs to rely on labor markets, but their consistency and quiet operation results in a calmer barn with happier, more productive cows.
To see the dairy robot in action, visit the Green Source Automation website.
—Progressive Dairy Editor Audrey Schmitz
This year, World Dairy Expo was alive again with visitors from all over the world. What a great sight to see, especially after a few years' hiatus due to COVID-19 travel concerns. Over 1,375 international attendees from over 86 countries registered to see amazing cattle and what’s new in the industry. The international lounge, now located in the exhibition hall, was buzzing with people networking and reconnecting. Registration also included a souvenir bag and pin, and visitors were welcome to mark on the map where they were from – a great sign for the future of dairy around the world.
—Progressive Dairy Editor Lora Bender
New modified-live Mycoplasma bovis vaccine for week-old calves
It is no secret that respiratory disease is a common and costly problem in dairy calves. Mycoplasma bovis is a common culprit, but unfortunately, dairies have not had a way to vaccinate calves against this bacteria until later in life, when many calves have already been exposed. Zoetis, however, changed this with the launch of Protivity, a modified-live vaccine for Mycoplasma bovis. This vaccine can be administered to calves as young as 1 week old and followed with a booster 21 days later, with calves demonstrating protection from the bacteria by 6 weeks old. In a recent challenge study, calves that received two doses of this vaccine had a 74% reduction in total lung lesions compared to calves in the control group. The vaccine can be administered in addition to other calf vaccines, like an intranasal vaccine, to help protect calves from the variety of disease challenges they often face in the first few months of life.
—Progressive Dairy Editor Jenna Hurty-Person