Phil Brocklehurst of Oak Farm is the winner of Robert Wiseman Cheshire Herds Competition Society award for “Best Milk
Hygiene” with average bactoscan of 8 (000/ml), and somatic cell count of 95 (000/ml). He said “It’s the first time I have
entered the competition and the first award I have received for milk quality.”
“Cows are bedded on sawdust and lime: clean cows and good preparation are fundamental to success.”
Following advice from GEA Hygiene Specialist Melanie Heath, the cows are prepared using the widely used re-usable Dermatex cloth system from GEA.
The cows come into the parlour, they are fed and their teats wiped in batches of four cows, the operator returning some 90
seconds later to attach the IQ milking clusters. Changing to the Dermatex system from using a foam cleaner and dry wiping with paper towels reduced milking times by 25 minutes. The reusable Dermatex cloths are prepared by soaking them prior to milking in a DermaPré/CircoFlush PE5 solution that will clean and disinfect the teats. One cloth is used for each cow, and after
milking the cloths are washed in a normal washing machine with GEA Domowash PE detergent.
After milking the units are removed by WestfaliaSurge automatic cluster removers and the teats are dipped using the iodine-based LuxDip 50B barrier dip described by Phil as “very, very, very, good”. He said that the previous dip was “hard on the
bags and the teats”, but he is now very happy with teat condition.
“Milk quality is excellent and there have been just 23 cases of mastitis per hundred cows milked. In fact there has been only one case of mastitis between May and August this summer, which has saved a lot of money.”
The 90 cows are milked in an 8-unit abreast parlour with WestfaliaSurge milking equipment installed in 2008.
They are milked with the award-winning IQ clusters and silicone liners, which Phil “really likes”. The parlour is well maintained being tested and serviced annually by local dealer Jace Supplies Ltd. It is washed with hot water and detergent twice a day using CircoAction SFM and CircoAction AFM. Melanie selected these GEA detergents having first analysed the farm’s water supply,
and advised Phil on the correct dosage rates for his system.
Phil attributes his success to attention to detail, and following good advice, not only from Melanie and Jace Supplies Ltd, but also from his veterinary surgeon Bridget Taylor of the Wright and Morten practice in Macclesfield and their monthly Milkcheq service, supported by CIS individual cell count data recording.
Phil is pleased with the system, his cows, and, of course, the not insubstantial bonus payments made for high quality milk by his supplier.
He is happy to recommend this hygiene programme to others.