Liz Herrema - Herralea Farm

“We saw an instant reduction in our somatic cell count”

Herrema Family – Herralea Farms

Farm: Herralea Farm
Name: Liz Herrema
Parlour type: Swingover
Milking points: 10
Herd size: 90
Installation date: 13/02/2019

Liz Herrema farms in Uxbridge, Ontario with her family at Herralea Farm. The farm has been in the family since 1961 and Liz supports her husband Howie, third generation dairy farmer, and their son Gerrit. “My son and his son, my grandchild, are currently fourth and fifth generations on the farm. So we’re very proud of that,” she explains.

The family initially chose to install the ADF System due to health issues within their herd. “The ADF System was recommended by our dealer, Norwell Dairy, as a way to reduce our somatic cell count. Before ADF we had an extremely high somatic cell count issue and we were at our wits end trying to solve the problem. There were circumstances that were happening that we didn’t truly understand and we knew that there was some sort of cross contamination that was occurring and we couldn’t figure out why. Our new cows that had just calved were coming in and their somatic cell counts were hitting the roof. We soon realised that it was the old system and the transfer of bacteria between cows,” Liz details.

Liz and her family were surprised and impressed with how quickly the ADF System helped them. “We put it in and we saw benefits immediately and it truly reduced the stress load. With the ADF System the sanitation that happens between each of the cows and the automatic dipping; it really stopped that transfer of bacteria from one cow to another. So I was greatly relieved to see an instant reduction in our somatic cell count after using it, even just after a couple of days, it made such a difference.”

dairy cow

There are other benefits that the family have seen since installing ADF. “Labour, time and money savings. Even with the teat dip itself, because it’s measured out for each cow, there’s a cost savings in that as well,” adds Liz.

The staff at Herralea Farms enjoy working with the ADF System. “They really like the system. It helps with manpower in the parlour – there’s no concern with having to go back and dip the cow once the milker comes off. It’s just a time saving point from their perspective as well, and they’re easy to use. It also helps with the labour costs. The cows seem at ease with it too,” Liz explains.

The wellbeing of their herd has always been important to the Herrema family. “With our family and the direction that we are going with the farm, we’re looking to be progressive in environmental issues, as well as the health and wellbeing of our animals. We’re very proud that we invite people to enter the premises who want to tour around and see what our animal husbandry and our management practises provide to the health and wellbeing of our animals. We are producing something that we’re extremely proud of here,” says Liz.

“We would most definitely recommend the ADF System to other farmers – and we do! We’ve had other farmers come to our open house – they toured the facility and there was a lot of discussion with the ADF Milking system and what the benefits were. We don’t hesitate to provide an opportunity to communicate to other dairy farmers the benefits of ADF.”

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