One thought on “Do we need the Lincs super dairy?

  1. It’s possible that Sean Rickard has a point. Very big factory cattle farms, with 5000 very high-yielding animals, may well be better for cows, and more energy and cash-efficient, than small to medium-sized factory farms that have 120 to 400 or so high-yielding animals. The very big units can indeed afford to keep vets and other specialists on hand, and big vehicles and all the rest, while the medium-sized ones have to be more ad hoc.

    But — as Paul Stephenson said – the far bigger point is whether we need factory farms at all. There are many good reasons – to do with animal welfare, the environment, and human health, employment, and general wellbeiing – to think that milk should be produced from cows of medium yield (up to 5000 litres) raised on pasture, preferably in small herds.

    Then, in discussing the pros and cons of these more traditional herds, we need to distinguish clearly between those that are well run by excellent farmers, and those that for various reasons are below par. Some will be below par largely because the present economy does not favour such farms, and the farmers therefore are too poor to maintain high standards. If we simply lump them all together to keep the statistics simple we could well put the traditional farms in a dubious light.

    Overall, we need studies that take everything into account (including detailed analyses of milk composition, all aspects of welfare, and overall environmental impact); and compare the best with the best.

    Have such studies ever been done? If not, why not?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.