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New technology to optimise milk production and welfare

Agtech company Cainthus launches Alus Behavior to allow large dairies to further optimise milk production and animal welfare. What else can we expect?

Earlier this year, ALUS Nutrition was launched as Cainthus’s first product which offers bespoke technology that monitors feed 24/7 by using a smart camera system. Now, Cainthus has released their second product, Alus Behaviour, a technology allowing insights into cow behaviour, cow comfort and playing a pivotal role to further increase farm profitability and sustainability, according to a recent press release.

The Alus technology relies on a smart camera system that observes each pen 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Photo: Cainthus
The Alus technology relies on a smart camera system that observes each pen 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Photo: Cainthus

When we look at large scale dairy operations, there are often issues with labour shortages, farm profitability and feed management, while keeping animals healthy and maintaining high welfare levels. Cainthus, a computer vision and artificial intelligence company, have for the last 3 years worked alongside their farmer advisor group in North America to develop this technology that helps address these challenges on farm- and animal level.

More resting, more milk

Alus Behavior looks at the cows and their activities 24/7, such as lying, eating, drinking (the 24-hours cow time budget, otherwise known as the response of a cow to the environment) and ensures that cows are displaying the behavioural patterns that result in maximum milk production. If cows are relaxed and can show their normal behaviour, this directly results in increased health and welfare, better milk production, and hence better farm profitability. The lying time of high-yielding cows, for example, is crucial for maximising milk production and their welfare and set at a minimum of 12 hours per day.

Research shows that for every additional hour of resting time, milk production increases with approximately 1.7kg (Grant, 2007 Miner Institute). Having the ability to monitor lying time is therefore key to improving productivity and identifying potential issues with the cows.

Technology in ag is becoming more and more important, especially in dairy where efficiency is everything to survival because our net revenues are getting smaller and smaller,” said Steve Maddox Jr., one of Cainthus’s farm advisors.

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Cow Comfort Index

At the time of release, Alus Behavior will deliver insights into lying time and time out of pen. This will be enhanced soon after to provide the full cow time budget, including eating time, drinking time, and standing time. Another key feature of this December’s release is the Cow Comfort Index, which can be used as an indicator of lameness and as an important validation of overall welfare.

Cainthus has developed artificial intelligence to automatically turn visual inputs from cameras into real-time insights about feed management and animal behaviour. Photo: Cainthus
Cainthus has developed artificial intelligence to automatically turn visual inputs from cameras into real-time insights about feed management and animal behaviour. Photo: Cainthus

AI to manage your herd

The Alus technology relies on a smart camera system that observes each pen 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Cainthus has developed artificial intelligence to automatically turn visual inputs from cameras into real-time insights about feed management and animal behaviour. These insights are displayed daily on any device available on the farm, be it a phone, tablet or a PC, via an easy-to-use interface. For those who want to delve deeper into the data and management actions, detailed analytics of the information is available as well, at the palm of your hands.

Cainthus reveals bespoke feed technology
Cainthus has revealed its first product: ALUS Nutrition. The product offers bespoke technology that monitors feed 24/7 using a smart camera system.

“It delivers accurate, reliable, non-biased and real-time information which allows for early intervention on the farm. This technology is offering producers the ability to increase the precision with which they manage their herd and as a result-drives-efficiencies, maximises production and profitability on farms,” says Bramble, portfolio growth lead manager Cainthus.

Cainthus CEO Aidan Connolly adds: “I think the next 3 years are going to be the most exciting for precision livestock farming. Cainthus has now installed its technology on several major farms in the US, tracking thousands of cows.”

PR source and for more info: Cainthus