Transferring knowledge between practitioners, researchers, educators and extensionists was a key concern of the ’Optimisation of milk production with fresh grass feeding’ project. The study groups of the participating farms were particularly important. They provided the foundations and data necessary for establishing research questions and worked intensively to implement the new work practices. This triggered numerous innovations on the farms and supported the transfer of knowledge through concrete actions. To achieve this effect, an important precondition had to be fulfilled: the careful selection of highly motivated farms willing to exchange thoughts and experiences freely with each other. Additional success factors were the intensive support of the project leaders and also, unusually, of moderators as important hubs of communication among the participants. The combination of these factors placed high demands on all concerned and these were largely met in this project, as our investigations show.
Stable climate has an important impact on the respiratory health of horses. In a study on indoor climate quality, three different ventilation systems were tested.
Although milk-production oriented (MPO) cow breeds have also become established in the mountain region, farms with the dual-purpose ‘Original Simmental’ breed are proving to be economically viable, with lower costs and higher direct payments making up for lower revenues from milk.
High milk yields before drying-off increase the risk of udder infections during the dry period. An online survey highlights what drying-off methods are currently used and how farmers rate the ‘incomplete milking’ approach for reducing milk yield.