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New case studies on top performing dairy farms will help other farmers drive their economic and environmental performance, says Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy.

The studies are part of the Ministry for Primary Industries’ Farm Systems Change programme, which is looking at ways to help farmers boost performance by learning from the strongest performers.

“Last year the Government allocated $800,000 towards this project which is focused on understanding the drivers of farm performance and sharing that knowledge with others.

“A key focus in these case studies is how high performing farms keep their working expenses well below $4 per kilogram of milk solids. This includes the availability of feed, how efficiently it’s turned into milk solids, and how much is wasted.

“Animal health is another area of focus in the case studies. Well cared for cows are more productive and leads to fewer cows required to produce a given quantity of milk solids.

“Another common theme across the case studies is finding ways to increase resilience through ‘weatherproofing’ production, such as changing feed types and improved pasture and irrigation management.”

The first set of case studies were released tonight at the 2016 DairyNZ Environment Leaders Forum and more will be released in 2017.

“Thank you to all the farmers involved who have been willing to share their experiences and knowledge through this project.

“This is one of a number of ways we are working with industry towards our goal of doubling the value of primary sector exports by 2025.”

The case studies are available at: https://www.mpi.govt.nz/growing-and-producing/dairy-animals/farm-systems-change/

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