In March 2020 the world's 500th DeLaval OptiDuo™ feed refresher was delivered to its new owner in Germany. On the market since 2018, the technology allows feed to be mixed and refreshed while being repositioned closer to the feed fence, keeping cows stimulated and increasing feed intakes.
Image 1: Ceremonial handover to Franz-Josef and Sebastian Göke with dealer Tobias Tenhumberg (from left)
This new approach also reduces feed waste and ensures that cows that are lower in the herd rankings receive a complete mix without stress and crowding. Cows visit the feed fence more regularly, and as a result, they are more productive and healthier. This is also, why the customer of the 500th OptiDuo chose the automated feed refresher "Choosing the OptiDuo was easy because automation and animal welfare in the barn are important to us," says farmer Sebastian Göke. "I was convinced by the technology right from the start. Especially because there is no left over feed and the cows can no longer sort feed, makes a big difference to other systems for me and we are now looking forward to seeing it in action," the farmer continues. The family-run farm in the north-west of Germany with about 100 dairy cows is future-oriented and will soon switch from conventional milking system to an automatic milking system.
The responsible agricultural service “Tenhumberg Tier und Technik” will install the OptiDuo and train the farmer in its operation. The experienced dealer is convinced of the technology. „The biggest advantage is the system security. Thanks to the induction system, the OptiDuo simply drives reliably without getting lost or encountering other problems", he says. Another advantage for him is the transverse auger, which not only pushes the feed but also loosens it up. "This functionality convinces many customers, as it ensures that the feed always remains fresh and attractive for the cows," explains Tenhumberg.
The DeLaval OptiDuo™ was officially launched in June 2018 and has been sold in European countries since the end of 2018. Sales in the American and Asian regions started a little later. The OptiDuo is suitable for both conventional (CMS) and automatic milking systems (AMS). Due to the improved cow traffic, the combination with AMS works particularly well. The system developed in Germany is produced in the company's own factory in Dobre Miasto, Poland. Germany is currently the largest market worldwide, followed by the Benelux countries and France.
Image 2: The decorated OptiDuo is ready for use