After forty years working as an AI technician for Livestock Improvement Co, Alex Macmillan (81) now farms beef cattle at Pipiwai, Northland.
The Hamilton firm, soon to be renamed LIC Automation, makes sensor technology systems for dairy sheds, for real-time milk analysis.
Its CellSense system is a finalist for the Endace Innovative Hi-Tech Hardware Product award, and its YieldSense system is up for the NZTE Innovative Agritech Product award.
CellSense meters measure somatic cell counts for early detection of mastitis. It is the only fully automated in-shed in-line somatic cell count sensor in the world, the company says.
YieldSense is a combined full-flow milk meter and milk component measuring device that measures the milk from each cow during milking. The sensor analyses yield, fat, protein, lactose, conductivity and plant wash.
Both systems integrate with LIC’s Protrack automation systems, so the farmer will be alerted to any cows seen by the sensor systems as needing closer inspection or treatment, and such cows will be automatically drafted at the end of milking.
DAL chief executive Gustavo Garza says, “the sensors are highly regarded by farmers in New Zealand, and demand from farmers overseas is increasing. Sensor technology has the potential to revolutionise herd testing and LIC is proud to be at the forefront of this technology.”
The winners will be announced in Wellington on May 15.