Dairy producers are invited to view the latest and greatest in robotic milking systems and visit with early adopters of this innovative technology Sept. 12-13 during a tour to Ontario organized by the Michigan State University Department of Animal Science and the MSU Extension Dairy Team. The tour will depart at 7:30 a.m. from the MSU Pavilion for Agriculture and Livestock Education, on the corner of Farm Lane and Forest Road in East Lansing, and return the following evening.
The first tour stop will be the Outdoor Farm Show in Woodstock, regarded by many as Canada's premier outdoor agricultural show. The latest in dairy equipment and related technology is featured in the Lely Innovation Centre, one of more than 650 exhibits found throughout the 50-acre show site. In addition to the Lely robotic milking system, numerous other dairy-related technologies will be on display, including two state-of-the-art fabric-covered buildings, the Discovery mobile barn cleaner, the Penner robotic pressure washing system, the BouMatic StepMetrix system, a Kubota M40 series tractor, and the latest in ventilation and manure storage. An Arntjen Harvest the Sun solar demonstration and high-tech feeding demonstrations are also scheduled.
That evening, tour goers will attend a barbecue supper hosted by Lely Canada at the show site. During and after the meal, participants will be able to observe the robotic milking units and other dairy equipment in action while networking with other dairy producers, many of whom currently operate robotic milking systems on their farms.
Day two of the tour will feature stops at several west central Ontario dairy farms currently using robotic milking technology. Lunch will be provided compliments of Lely Canada.
The $135 per person registration fee includes bus transportation, entry to the Outdoor Farm Show, the barbecue supper, one night's lodging (double or triple occupancy), and breakfast and lunch on Sept. 13. Participants are responsible for paying for their lunch at the show and dinner on the ride home. The early registration deadline is August 30, and seats are limited. Participants are encouraged to have a valid passport to cross the border, but federal regulations still allow for entry into Canada and reentry into the United States with an official birth or baptism certificate and a picture I.D.
For more information or to register for the tour, contact Kim Dobson, MSU Department of Animal Science, by calling 517-353-9227 or sending an e-mail to [email protected].
A copy of the tour flyer and registration form can also be downloaded at www.canr.msu.edu/dept/ans/index.html.
The MSU robotic milking system tour is sponsored by Lely U.S.A. and the Michigan Holstein Association.