Automatic milking : a better understanding

Research output: Book/ReportBookAcademic


In 2000 the book Robotic Milking, reflecting the proceedings of an International Symposium which was held in The Netherlands came out. At that time, commercial introduction of automatic milking systems was no longer obstructed by technological inadequacies. Particularly in a few west-European countries, systems were being installed at an increasing rate. However, it was recognised that the changeover from “traditional” to automatic milking affected the farming operation, herd management and control of milk quality profoundly and that many of the implications were still unknown. So, new challenges in various fields of dairy farming and new research areas emerged. Since this previous International Symposium, much has happened. In general automatic milking has been adopted as a realistic alternative for milking in the “traditional” milking parlour. Systems have gradually been improved and, maybe even more importantly, farmers have become more familiar with their potential and limitations, both technically and in herd management. The number of farms milking with an automatic milking system has worldwide increased to more than 2.200 by the end of 2003 . From 2000 to now, the level of scientific knowledge on various aspects and consequences of automatic milking has increased largely as well because of research efforts all over the world. A significant share of these efforts has been made within the framework of a EU-granted project on the implications of the introduction of automatic milking on dairy farms. Some seven research institutes and six industrial companies from six countries joined their expertise and experience in order to facilitate a widespread adoption of automatic milking without undesirable side effects. This book reflects the knowledge on automatic milking generated all over the world in the last few years. Its contents can therefore be regarded as the present state of knowledge in the field of automatic milking, for a better understanding
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationWageningen
PublisherWageningen Academic Publishers
Number of pages544
ISBN (Print)9789076998381
Publication statusPublished - 2004


  • machine milking
  • automation
  • robots
  • dairy farming
  • dairy herds


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