ANP Farms is a dairy operation in Puketaha, farming 300 cows in a split-calving system with a 20-side shed. They faced challenges with cow safety due to slippery conditions, particularly in the herringbone platform and entry/exit points, leading to injuries and equipment damage. Kriss Kung, the owner, stated, “There’s nothing worse than when a cow falls and can’t get back up.”
Recognizing the need for improved traction, ANP Farms initiated a rubber matting installation project. The farm chose Numat mats for their excellent grip and durability. As Kung put it, “We wanted something with a bit of grip… and we thought the Numat mats were the best ones.”
The project was conducted in stages, beginning with the herringbone platform and entry/exit points – areas identified as the most problematic. Kung acknowledged the cost of the Numat mats, saying, “They were a little bit dearer than the others, but you get what you pay for.”
The positive impact of the rubber matting was immediately noticeable. Kung reported an improvement in cow stability and a decline in lameness cases, “We don’t have much lameness, but I think it has decreased even more.” The number of cows suffering from lameness fell from an average of 12-15 per year to approximately half that rate.
The mats also reduced equipment damage. When cows kicked the milking cups, the resulting fall onto the rubber mats, rather than the previous concrete floor, significantly reduced breakages. As Kung explained, “We’re not going through as many bowls as we used to because of the rubber mat.”
Encouraged by the success of the initial installation, Kung plans to expand the use of rubber matting throughout the farm, “We’re eventually going to do the whole yard… that’s the whole plan.”
The rubber matting project at ANP Farms has been a resounding success, improving cow safety and reducing equipment costs. Despite a higher upfront cost, the Numat mats proved their worth in terms of quality and longevity. As Kung concluded, “If you’re going to get some mats, go for the better good ones… I’d highly recommend it to anyone thinking about rubber matting.”