Project Summary:  First-of-its-kind barn in the USA

The Rolf family of McIntosh, Minnesota, built a first-of-its-kind in the USA, fully automated milking and feeding barn. What makes this barn so unique? It houses all dairy animals throughout their lifespan—birth, young-stock, milking, and dry-period stages. They started milking in March of 2020.

With a barn built to accommodate 4 robots, they started with 3 Lely A5 robotic milkers. The cows ‘picked up’ their new routine very quickly, and after just one week into it, over 80% of the cows were already coming in on their own and milking themselves multiple times a day. Within 4 months of start-up, they let us know they were already up 20-25 lbs!

All milk cows, dry cows, young stock (300 lbs) and pregnant heifers are fed by the Lely Vector Feeding System. A full crane loading system with 2 mixing/feeding robots.
They also have 8 Lely Luna brushes for cow comfort.The barn is fully ventilated and temperature controlled with Schaefer Ventilation fans for cow comfort.

They said, "With heifers and milk cows under one roof, the Vector allows us to feed an unlimited number of rations with an unlimited number of ingredients. It also gives the cows a consistent mix, and we all know cows love consistency!"

Thank you to the Rolf family for your continued business relationship with us!

Images and videos of this project