Information and communication technologies to support decision making in farm management, operation and input-output sides of dairy cow breeding and lactation
Different digital technologies are applied, digital sets of data collected and analysed at dairy cow farms pose barriers for the more unified, platform-based support for an increased and high quality output performance of dairy cows. Producing the right quality and quantity of milk is not only economically beneficial. Digitalisation facilitates the traceability of this data and allows for a rapid response to emerging negative environmental impacts or animal welfare problems.
Through one data platform the professional management will be able to test rationalising of breeding and lactation process. Forage waste can also be measured and minimalized, and by this exploitation of soil can be optimized. The stock management can be driven online. Digitally available data can be cross-checked.
All input information is available. Information technology development would be/is first step for a dairy farm on the industry 4.0 road map. Main goal of this is the delivery of cost efficient use of resources. Through this digital transformation, as part of management decision making, key performance indicators can be transformed to leads that can be directly influenced independently of external effects.
Beneficiary is Bos Frucht Agrarian Cooperative, its partners/stakeholders are University of Kaposvár and several IT solutions providers. Further stakeholders are Milk Interprofessional Organization and Product Council, the Hungarian Chamber of Agriculture, and similar sized dairy cow farms.

Resources needed

As regards the investment no financial information is available. Bos Frucht Agrarian Cooperative as of 2019 had 3000 dairy cows, making it the second biggest dairy farm in the country. Committed farm workers and professional management is a must besides the state of the art US technology in use.

Evidence of success

The data science software specialized to dairy herd management combines strong analytical background and business flair. Data driven solutions from understanding business environment and cow health. Also, negative impacts on the environment can be reduced, and reaction to emerging problems becomes faster. Data management IT solutions are based on locally collected and used data may both increase environmental and economic performance of agricultural companies/cooperatives.

Difficulties encountered

Need for IT support: data scientist/software developers to elaborate data platform for reports/decision support.
Available digital data to be structured for transformation-optimization.
Use analyses of cooperative measurements (e.g. dry material absorption/cow compared to yield/cow) as benchmarks.

Potential for learning or transfer

The digitisation process in Hungary has been started at bigger, more capital intensive agrarian business units and farms. At the smaller ones (as several of those are present in South Transdanubia) it is slower and needs external references/assistance. This Good Practice with demonstration and transfer potential play crucial role towards the rolling out of digitisation. It is also relevant to the EU's green strategy, as animal welfare, milk yield measurement and traceability of environmental impacts also have significant learning potential. The Hungarian Good Practice owner organisation with 3000 cows rebuilt its farm in 2013 according to the highest technology standards that time (as introduced above), offers high level learning for further, smaller dairy farms interested on their way to digitisation.

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Main institution
Bos-Frucht Agrarian Cooperative
Dél-Dunántúl, Hungary (Magyarország)
Start Date
September 2013
End Date


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