‘Lean in dairy farming’:

Enhanced farm performances through Lean thinking

Maassluis, November 13 2018 – At the EuroTier 2018, Nestlé and Lely jointly presented the book ‘Lean in dairy farming’, that describes a new way of looking at farm management. A practical manual about the Lely DairyWise method, that combines Lean manufacturing tools to add value to every single step in the milk production and herd management process. Based on a collaborative team effort to improve performance by adding value, create flow, removing waste and reducing variation.

Proven method now available for dairy farming

By 2050, there will be nine billion mouths to feed. That means that the world needs to produce 70% more food. Intensifying food production in a sustainable manner will require famers to embrace new ways of working. Continuous improvement and capacities building in farming are key elements to overcome the challenges in food production and addressing consumer concerns.

Lean is a way of working that already has proved extremely useful in other industries, optimizing the usage of available resources. ‘Lean in dairy farming’ describes this vision in a practical way for dairy farming.

Based on experiences of dairy farmers

The DairyWise method described in the book is a unique farm optimization program, guided by Lean principles with the aim to improve the milk production process and the overall farm performances. A dairy farm team together with farm management experts start a journey with focus on continuous improvement. By sharing customized and hands on farm management knowledge, create engagement with employees and provide tools for continuous improvement.

Since 2015, farmers from over the world embraced this methodology. Clayton Hemminger (Hemdale Farms NY) is working with DairyWise since 2016: “We have increased milk per man hour by 13% since the start of this Lean approach. By looking at our milk per cow increase, we attribute about half of this increase in milk per man-hour to production and half to more efficient labor. It also helped our employees to be more engaged in their jobs because they have gained a better understanding of some of the concerns and issues we have to work through.”

Partnership Nestlé

Both Lely and Nestlé firmly believe that they can sustainably enhance and optimize the milk production process, reduce food losses and waste by enhancing Dairy Farm Performances.
Mr. Alexander van der Lely, CEO Lely Group: “We can contribute and stimulate the dairy farming evolution towards a profitable, enjoyable and sustainable future by providing farmers with innovations and knowledge to achieve this. The DairyWise method fits to our belief that the cow must always be the starting point of everything we do. If all work in the barn is done in a way that minimizes interruptions of the cow and leaves ‘the cows being cows’, this stimulates robot visits and milk production.”

Mr. Hans Jöhr, Corporate Head of Agriculture at Nestlé: “As the world’s largest milk company, Nestlé purchases more than half of the milk locally as fresh milk. Like Lely, we recognize and share the concerns about sustainable animal production systems. The safety and quality of raw materials are best achieved through healthy animals and supporting the long-term economic, environmental and social viability of animal farming systems. This book is a unique example of what can be done when two companies work together in a collaborative and positive way.”

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