Over-milking occurs when the milking apparatus remains attached to the udder with little or no milk being removed, thereby subjecting the udder to tissue stress and resulting in poor milking efficiency.
To date no international organization has undertaken the task of establishing universal guidelines for the optimal removal of milking apparatus. This has resulted in large differences in recommendations for removal methods for both cows and small ruminants in different countries.
To address these issues, combat over-milking and ensure maximum productive efficiency, the International Dairy Federation (IDF) has published the bulletin “Teat-cup and cluster removal strategies for cattle and small ruminants: review and recommendations.”
IDF ‘uniquely positioned’
The review provides best practice guidance to milking equipment suppliers, dairy farm advisers and operators who will benefit from advice on how to address their milking performance and milk quality concerns, particularly on the selection of optimal teat-cup and cluster removal settings.
Caroline Emond, director general of the IDF said the organization is uniquely positioned to offer guidance based on “diligent research, a wealth of experience and unrivalled scientific expertise.
“The IDF is determined to work towards a world that can enjoy safe, nutritious and sustainable milk that is produced in an environmentally-friendly way by incorporating the highest standards in animal welfare,” Emond said.
“This review will assist in the delivery of a universal set of guidelines on optimal teat-cup and cluster removal strategies that will benefit the global dairy sector.”
Reduction in over-milking
Ralph Ginsberg, leader of the IDF action team on milking equipment and methods, said the use of automatic cluster removers has led to a significant reduction in over-milking, a reduction in machine on time and an improvement in udder health.
“The aim of this publication is to provide guidelines for milking equipment suppliers, milking advisers and technicians from members of the IDF who are acknowledged as world leaders in milking technology,” Ginsberg said.