“We are saving five hours a day milking and our yield has increased by 2000 litres per cow because we added a 60-point E100 rotary parlour”
Rory Christie farms in partnership with his brother Gregor near Port William on the south west coast of Scotland. He grew the farm’s herd from 600 to 1500 cows and needed more milking provision to decrease the number of hours it took to milk. In 2019 Rory invested in a second parlour to move to two milkings a day
“We chose to build a 60-point E100 DeLaval parlour. This will hopefully help us hit our production targets of 5500 litres per 500 kilo cow, feeding 500 kilos of concentrate per year,” says Rory.
The parlour is one of two DeLaval units, the first being a 44-point rotary that was installed in 2005. “Before we added the second parlour it was taking us ten hours to milk the herd, which was not sustainable. By adding the second we have been able to reduce this to two and half hours in each parlour. It has increased yield from 3500 litres to 5500 litres, which makes the farm more sustainable,” he says.
This rotary is one of eight E100 series rotaries installed in the UK. “It was the first E100 to be installed in Scotland and we worked closely with local DeLaval dealer Mathers Dairy Utensils who also installed our original DeLaval herringbone parlours. Their engineers are always attentive, and they know how to cut a deal with farmers like us,” says Rory. The E100 was installed to a design that Rory developed himself. “The angle is offset to speed up entry and exit which makes cow flow faster. We also have two gates meaning we can draft from four directions,” he adds.
The parlour is coupled to the DelPro system that enables Rory to draw data about each cow, which he sees as key to improving yield in the future. “We see data as the best way to make improvements in the 21st century. We do in race weighing so we can monitor live weight compared to production. It is a quest to understand cow efficiency, and data will give us the information we need,” he says.