Milk vat monitoring and milk quality requirements

Milk vat monitoring and milk quality requirements

1 April 2022

Are you getting the most out of your milk vat monitoring system (MVMS)?

Since the rollout of MVMS across the Co-operative's network of farms, farmers are seeing efficiencies in the collection of high-quality milk.

Now 99% of farms have either a Levno, HALO or DTS system installed via Fonterra's subsidy.

That subsidy covers the cost of each system's base model, system training, helpdesk support and gives farmers real-time information directly to their phone, covering:

  • Milk inlet and vat temperatures
  • Vat volume
  • Milk agitation
  • Milking start/stop times

Farm Source Category Strategy Manager for Services and On Farm Technology, Stephen Alexander hopes farmers take up the opportunity to use MVMS insights to improve their dairy operations and maintain compliance.

"At Farm Source, we strive to always be adding to our offer to farmers and provide tools relevant to dairy operations that ultimately make farming easier."

In saying this, Stephen acknowledges that making changes to farm systems doesn't happen overnight and some farmers will need more support than others to understand how MVMS can benefit their farm and how to use it.

One of the key benefits of MVMS when it comes to milk quality compliance is the milk inlet and vat temperatures monitoring.

Milk needs to be cooled in line with MPI regulations to be collected by the milk tanker and while most Farmers will have safeguards in place, should those fail, or a farmer not see a temperature change, the system will alert the farmer right away.

Similarly, if the agitator within the vat stops, the system will send an alert.

"If farmers have experienced issues in the past with their milk quality, or maybe the milk cooling system isn't as efficient as it could be, MVMS and its ability to measure temperature in the milk as it hits the vat, will pick up if there's an issue with the cooling system," Stephen explains.

He adds those who have larger operations or want to get more comprehensive insight may want to consider upgrading their system to a premium model, available across the Levno, HALO and DTS platforms.

On the base model, the three systems offer 40, 50 and 60 text notifications, respectively, a month but with the upgrade, all offer up to 100 texts. Depending on the temperament of a Farmers cooling system, the cost of an upgrade could save the cost of a vat of milk.

Of course, with all on-farm products, Stephen says farmers who aren't sure how to get the most out of their milk monitoring system or would like support in turning the MVMS insights into efficiencies, they should contact their local Farm Source team.

"Calibrating their MVM system and understanding its role can be a challenge for farmers but Farm Source is here to help you. Remember we are only a phone call or a cup of tea away."