Welfare standards and carbon footprint continue to move swiftly up the consumers, and therefore retailer’s agenda, therefore the impact is felt by farmers who have to react to changes in retail contract demands.
In the dairy industry retailers are altering their contractual agreements with suppliers to include aspects of lameness control and monitoring.
Many retailers require their producer pool to conduct quarterly mobility assessments. Mobility scoring is a hugely valuable tool in helping improve lameness by detecting issues early, but not only that reducing lameness will have an impact on the bottom line.
Regular foot trimming and mobility scoring keep your cows mobile, healthy and productive.
It improves efficiency and reduces cost. With spiralling input and production costs, subsidy cuts and milk price rises not keeping up with inflation, dairy farmers will continue to focus on becoming more efficient.
Foot trimming may only be a part of the marginal gain but that will continue to be more and more important as the overall profit margin comes under pressure.
Efficiencies will be key for farmers to stay ahead of this cost-price squeeze and become more sustainable and maintaining world class animal welfare standards is all part of that sustainability.
Nick Challenor is the owner of ND Challenor Professional Livestock Services