Innovative app package and weigh system Cowconnect is the next generation in dairy feed management systems – offering a ‘plug and play’ solution that is compatible with all brands of feed mixer wagon.
Launching in 2017, it was developed by a Danish farmer who was frustrated that cow rations could not be tracked and were difficult to manage on farm, with rations being printed daily as cow groups changed and feed leftovers not matching those on the farm.
Cowconnect offers a simple feed management and weighing system for dairy cows. An overview is provided on mobile devices, from where rations can be set and adjusted while on the go, offering simpler and more accurate mixing.
Data can be automatically exchanged with herd management systems and farmers get daily reliable reports on feed intake, efficiency and costs to help increase profits and save time on daily feedings.
Sales area manager Gary Jackson says key benefits that are appreciated by farmers are the ease of use and the ability to give everyone access to the ration – from the nutritionist to the person delivering the feed – via the cloud-based app.
Cheshire dairy farmers Tom and Karen Halton recently purchased the app, which links to the weigh scales on their mixer. After discovering that there was too much undigested fibre in the ration, they began feeding twice daily instead of once, using a BvL tub mixer and overnight saw a 1l/cow increase in milk as the ration was fresher and mixed better. The family appreciated being able to quickly and easily make changes to the ration.
The Cowconnect app provides an overview of feed rations and a stock inventory of purchased goods. Dry matter intake can also be monitored from there and the ration automatically recalculated when you change cow numbers, or based on weather conditions.
It also allows mixer precision by monitoring the accuracy of loading each ingredient in the mix, as well as the accuracy of the unloading process. Gary says the system not only saves time having to physically work out rations with a calculator, pen and paper, as the ration is automatically calculated, but also saves money through improved efficiency.
Improved accuracy allows farmers to see what their cows are actually eating, not just what they estimate them to be eating. This brings reduced feed costs and health benefits for dairy cows, resulting in better productivity.