Delivering greater freedom for dairy cows and farmers

22nd July 2019
Source: Festo Ltd
Posted By : Lanna Cooper
Delivering greater freedom for dairy cows and farmers


Like many other industries, dairy farming is under increasing pressure to become more efficient and more productive. A company at the forefront of automated milking systems, Fullwood Packo has partnered with Festo to deliver the flexibility and performance required in the modern dairy industry.

The company’s latest and smartest M2erlin robot provides farmers with a robust system for voluntary milking cows. Using the automated, voluntary method, cows are free to walk into one of the milking robots' feeding stations at any point of the day. Once inside, each cow is identified, and the milking head is moved into position guided by the vision system to be fixed to the teats.

M2erlin is developed around improving milk quality and cow wellbeing. Farmers can achieve increased efficiency and maximise productivity with each robot able to milk up to 70 cows per day. It offers flexibility in configuration, so farmers can choose to allow their herd completely unrestricted movement, or use directed traffic options to control feeding and milking parameters.

The ability for cows to choose when they are ready to be milked positively improves milk quality and yield. Automation further allows farmers to collect data about yield rates and quality, as well as the general health of each cow.

Managing Director, Andrew Dodwell said: “Herd management software gives farmers complete digital control over the milking, feeding, health and fertility of their herd. So, not only can an automated milking system like M²erlin enable farmers to use their time more efficiently and maintain a better work/life balance, it also provides a wealth of information about productivity and cow welfare.”

Automation partner
Festo supplies complete cartesian robot assemblies, and pneumatic and controls kits for each M2erlin robot. These assemblies and kits mean that Fullwood Packo receives everything it needs for rapid incorporation into the M2erlin as a complete package. Festo supported Fullwood Packo with the original cartesian robot design - optimised for use in the demanding environment and application of the milking parlour.

This continues with ongoing software programming support and upgrades. It means that Festo can apply its automation expertise in ensuring the build quality, reliability and performance of the critical parts on which the automated milking system depends. This includes adherence to the strict hygiene standards and harsh washdown regimes associated with food production.

Swapnil Khedekar, Head of Technical Services at Festo UK, said: “We have developed a close outsourcing partnership with Fullwood Packo over a long period of time. Our complete assemblies and kits drastically reduce the need for multiple component order numbers and significantly reduce time in purchasing and logistics. The pre-assembled robots are built and tested by Festo automation experts and delivered on a Just in Time (JIT) basis using the Festo production capability - so all Fullwood Packo needs to do is connect them into their system on arrival.”  

By optimising the ordering process and developing pre-assembled automation solutions, Festo is providing ongoing support to Fullwood Packo in its ambitions to improve the lives of dairy cows and their farmers.

You must be logged in to comment

Write a comment

No comments

Sign up to view our publications

Sign up

Sign up to view our downloads

Sign up

Girls in Tech | Catalyst | 2019
4th September 2019
United Kingdom The Brewery, London
DSEI 2019
10th September 2019
United Kingdom EXCEL, London
EMO Hannover 2019
16th September 2019
Germany Hannover
Women in Tech Festival 2019
17th September 2019
United Kingdom The Brewery, London
European Microwave Week 2019
29th September 2019
France Porte De Versailles Paris