Efficiency Check

Herd management tool to optimise efficiency and animal health on dairy farms

Topic area
Agriculture and forestry, incl. value chain

Disaggregation level
Animal welfare
Energy efficiency
EIP European Innovation Partnership
Business management

Project region
Lower Austria
Upper Austria

LE– Programming Period
LE 14–20

Project period

Project costs overall
153.791,36 €

Subsidy from LE 14-20
128.660,18 €

EN - 16.02.1. Unterstützung bei der Entwicklung neuer Erzeugnisse, Verfahren & Technologien der Land-, Ernährungs- & Forstwirtschaft

Project initiator
ARGE Effizienz-Check

Short description

During this project a modern and practical herd management tool is developed to help farmers optimizes the efficiency and animal health on dairy farms.

Point of departure

The milk price of the past few months shows once again how important it is for the efficient management of each individual farm to know its strengths and weaknesses. However, presently there are hardly any opportunities for farmers to have the economic soundness and nutrient efficiency of dairy cows analysed for individual animals. Especially the use of data merged from different sources is often very difficult. Computer programmes which enable comparable evaluations are in most cases expensive and have to be installed locally. Moreover, in many cases all parameters need to be entered manually and the analysis of the data always covers but one component of the agricultural production. To enable significantly simpler and more efficient planning, for example of saving opportunities in dairy farms, the web application “Efficiency check” is developed.

Targets and target groups

The objective is to develop a modern and practical web application which helps dairy farmers take targeted measures to improve the economic and nutrient efficiency in milk production on farm and animal level. In the long run, the data collected also help achieve improvements in the breeding of animals, making them healthier due to more sparing drug application, nutrient and production efficiency.

The main target group of the project comprises dairy farms and veterinaries, but also extension services and the teaching sector can draw benefit from the results.

Project implementation and measures

The Operational Group consists of practitioners, extension workers and researchers. The lead-partner is the Association of Austrian Cattle Breeders (ZAR). In the fields of research and programming also external service providers are involved in the project. The centerpiece of the project is the execution of a pilot project on trial farms for the participatory development of the web application. Through close interaction between farmers, vets from practical life, extension workers and the project team the evaluations and presentations of the web application are to be adjusted to the needs and requirements of agricultural holdings with different conditions of production.

Results and effects

The expected outcome of the ARGE Effizienz Check is the final version of the web application “Efficiency Check”, which can, without additional cost, be made available to farmers and the attending veterinaries for free use via the existing web portal of the RDV. “Efficiency Check” is also a perfect tool for extension services and training to develop and optimise farm strategies. The data collected during routine operation provide a valuable basis for breeding success improving the health and efficiency of dairy cattle and for further scientific research.