Impressive Lincoln Dairy Farm results

Added 3 months ago

Hawke’s Bay doesn’t have heaps of dairying, but the operators we do have should be impressed with these environmental and productivity improvements at the Lincoln University Dairy Farm.

As reported in Farmers Weekly (14 Mar 2022), new approaches at the South Island Dairying Demonstration Centre at Lincoln have yielded 50% reductions in nitrogen loss – from 72 to 36kg/N/ha per year.

These results produced through lower stocking rates (3.9 to 3.5 cows/ha), using less bought-in supplementary feed, applying less nitrogen (down from average 300 to 160kg/ha/year), and culling cows earlier (before weather and ground conditions heighten leaching rates).

At the same time, production per cow has increased from 430 to 500kg/MS/cow.

That sounds like win/win smart farming.

Looking ahead, Lincoln is also planning to plant one-third of the farm in nitrogen-capturing plantain, with the expectation that this will further reduce annual N losses from 36 to 26kg/N/ha/year.


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