Modern times require modern solutions. And one of the things that we’ve seen over the past decades is automation. In fact, farms and dairies make use of technology to perform the tasks easier. There are two methods when it comes to milking a cow. The traditional method is milking the cow manually using your hands. While two, another method is to rely on a milk machine to get the job done.

For farms that have large operations, there is no denying that a milk machine is a must. However, keep in mind that the average farm worldwide has 1 to 2 cows.

For those who are running a personal dairy, it is usually a dilemma whether they should invest in a milking machine. Keep in mind that you should do your research before you decide to invest in one. There are pros and cons that you want to consider. From here, you want to weigh your situation if it is a good investment for your farm.

Pros

Practical for a large herd

If you have a large herd, it takes a lot of effort to milk every cow manually. Given the strong demand for milk, farms with large scale operations invest in milk machines in order to ensure proper milking. Keep in mind that fatigue will set in. It means that relying on hands will not be practical especially if you are dealing with a large herd.

Minimal Expenses

When it comes to a large herd, it is a good idea to have a milk machine because it can prevent you from hiring a lot of people. To give you an idea, if you have a large herd and you don’t have a milk machine, you will most likely need to hire at least twelve people to get the job done.

As the milking machine decreases the dependency on workers, it means that you don’t need to worry if an employee decides to quit or find another job on another farm. It is easier to find someone who is going to operate the machine in order to ensure the activity within the farm.

Less Stress on the Cows

There are many factors when it comes to milking. In fact, when it comes to manual milking, you will need to consider fatigue which could potentially lead to bad milking technique. This could ultimately stress the cows. With the help of milking machines, it becomes possible to improve the overall health of the cows.

Hard to find a farmer who can milk manually

These days, manual milking is a dying trade. In fact, there are a few farmers who can confidently tell you that they can milk a cow by hand for hours every day. Now, trying to find a milk machine operator is easier. Once the operator hooks the machine into the cow, the machine will do its job without any problem.

Maintains the taste

One of the things that farms want to avoid is to let the milk sit in the bucket for too long. The faster the milk is chilled, the better the taste for the consumers. If you start hand milking the cow, even experienced farmers can’t beat the efficiency of a milk machine. Therefore, milk won’t have to sit in a bucket.

Cons

Cost

Milk machines can be considered an investment. There are those that cost $2,000 while there are those that can even cost more. Now, it isn’t just the machine that you will have to consider. Every farm or dairy should also take a closer look at the cost of chemicals used for cleaning and maintenance that can cost hundreds of dollars.

An old cattle will have a difficult time adjusting

If you have old cattle on your farm that experienced manual hand milking all its life, it can be a challenge for them to get used to the machine. There is a possibility that the quality of milk is going to be affected considering that they are stressed. The good news is that the newer generations are most likely used to having milk machines.

Cleaning the machine takes time

When it comes to cleaning the machine, you must remember that it takes a lot of time. Though milking is quick and can be finished in 5 minutes, you will have to clean the machine for the next 30 minutes or so.

If you are running a farm with a large herd, there’s no question that you will have to invest in a milk machine. However, if you are running a small farm, you might want to make sure that you consider all these pros and cons. Of course, every farm is different. From your budget to your priorities, you want to make sure that you weigh everything before investing in a milk machine.