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Improving Animal Welfare and Farm Safety at Parawera Farm

Parawera, Waikato
Overview

Andy Gower, alongside his wife Ange, have been operating Parawera Farm for 19 years, where they milk 350 dairy cows. Their farming operations faced significant setbacks due to unsafe conditions on their 2-year-old herringbone shed, where the concrete surface had become
dangerously smooth.

Challenges Faced

The Gowers experienced two costly incidents where cows slipped on the ramp, resulting in significant financial losses and animal welfare concerns.

"When one cow slips over on the ramp, you just think, maybe she was just being silly. And then when it happens a day later with the second one, you know you're in trouble. Two cows at $1700 a cow, That's $3400. Both cows do an average of 400 solids at $8 of solid. That's $9,800 gone just like that. That was the moment for both of us. We don't like seeing young girls like this."

Solution Provided

The Gowers chose NumatAGRI VGrip matting based on previous positive experiences with the brand in their old shed. They had explored various options at field days and found that NumatAGRI’s product superiority was evident compared to competitors, especially in terms of design that prevented slips. The decision was clear as other products did not meet their safety standards, offering mats that were too smooth and ineffective.

Implementation

Installing the NumatAGRI mats proved straightforward and efficient. Initially, the cows were hesitant due to the new surface texture, but within three days, they adjusted well, confidently navigating the ramp without any slips. The installation process was impressively swift, completed in just three hours between milking sessions, minimising disruption to the farm’s operations

Outcomes

The introduction of NumatAGRI VGrip mats has transformed the safety and efficiency of operations at Parawera Farm. The cows now exhibit no hesitation when using the ramp, significantly reducing the risk of injuries. The ease of maintenance with the mats has also been notable; cleaning procedures remained as simple as with concrete, with excellent drainage that allowed for quick and easy wash-downs.

Andy has expressed high satisfaction with both the product and the service provided by NumatAGRI.

"Everybody from the salesmen to the guys installing it have been awesome to deal with. They just rock up, get the job done quickly, and the results speak for themselves. It’s been absolutely awesome."

Conclusion

The implementation of NumatAGRI matting at Parawera Farm has not only safeguarded
the welfare of the dairy cows but also fortified the farm against potential future losses related to
animal injuries. This case study underscores the value of investing in high-quality, effective safety solutions that deliver both immediate and long-term benefits for farm operations.

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