By: Mickayla Myers, Ruminant Nutrition Graduate Research Assistant, Paul Kononoff, Dairy Extension Specialist, and Kim Clark, Dairy Extension Educator, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Robotic or automatic milking systems (AMS) have steadily increased in popularity in the dairy industry since the installation of the first commercial unit in 1992 in the Netherlands. In 2015, the number of AMS units installed was over 25,000 worldwide. Here in Nebraska, there are two commercial dairy farms that having installed multiple AMS units, Demerath Farms (Plainview, NE) and Beaver’s Dairy (Carleton, NE). Demerath Farms installed four AMS units in February 2017 and are set up to milk 240 cows. Beaver’s Dairy began milking with five AMS units in May 2017 and is set up to milk 300 cows. Additionally, there are several other dairies that are looking into milking robots for their farm. Typically, 60 cows are milked on one robot. One robot will likely cost the producer anywhere from $150,000- $200,000. Continue...