James Duke

A new technology based on ‘intelligent venting’, which has been developed by ADF Milking, is improving dairy cow teat health and speeding up milking times on UK farms.

High mouthpiece chamber vacuum levels caused by inconsistency in the size of cow teats will result in external and internal teat swelling. The internal swelling, known as congestion, restricts the capacity of the teat canal, slowing
down milk flow and preventing full ilk-out.

When milk flow is slower, teats are under vacuum for longer, and also at a higher vacuum than necessary, risking

ADF Milking created a solution with InVent, which can detect when the vacuum level rises above a threshold kilopascals. When the threshold is crossed, a valve in the liner mouthpiece chamber opens, injecting clean, foodgrade air into the mouthpiece and reducing vacuum. Each liner is then the perfect fit on every teat during milking.

InVent can be used with ADF Milking clusters and liners.

The company’s founder, James Duke, says farmers using InVent report that cows are calmer and quieter.

“Some are getting an extra litre of milk per cow, with one producer seeing yields increase by two litres a cow,’’ he says.

“Controlling vacuum levels on each teat individually results in calmer cows, less teat damage, higher yields and faster milk let down.’’

Not only are cows milking out fully, but also faster and with significantly fewer cases of mastitis plus lower somatic cell count, he adds.

“One producer has seen milking times reduced by 30 minutes – they milk three times a day, so that is 1.5 hours a day or 548 hours in a year, equivalent to 68 eight-hour shifts.’’

James says the development of InVent is part of a strategy of continuous innovation within his business.

“Our talented research and development department has invested a significant amount of time perfecting the InVent system, both in the lab and out on-farm,’’ he says.

The on-farm trials involved some cows being milked on one side with vents, while on the other two quarters vents were disabled. Teat bringing, congestion and colour were significantly better in the teats milked with the venting system.

ADF Milking’s future developments will focus on cow comfort, improved milk production, environmental concerns and physiological issues.

What the Judges said

Clear knowledge of the problem working in line with farmers to develop a solution. Not just a tech solution but it was an initial Health and well being solution and affined to supporting British munfacturing