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Investigations on dairy welfare and performance on German organic farms

Hoerning, Bernhard; Simantke, Christel and Aubel, Erhard (2005) Investigations on dairy welfare and performance on German organic farms. Paper at: Researching Sustainable Systems - International Scientific Conference on Organic Agriculture, Adelaide, Australia, September 21-23, 2005. [Unpublished]

[thumbnail of 4371-Hoerning_etal_4p_revised-ed.pdf] PDF - German/Deutsch


An investigation was carried out on 74 organic dairy farms in Germany. Results were an average milk production of 5.960 kg, 223.000 somatic cell counts (SCC), 387 days calving interval, 23.5 % culling rate, 46 Euro annual veterinary costs per cow. Farmers were asked for disease incidences. Cows were scored for injuries and body condition. The results were combined with possible influencing factors (herd size, breed, region, farming association, housing system, housing factors, amounts of concentrates). The most frequent health problems were udder, fertility, and claw disorders. These subjective estimations of disease incidences by the farmers could be validated with herd recording data (SCC, calving interval, culling reasons). Overall rate of injuries was low. Body condition scoring revealed only few problems. Holstein-Friesians showed the highest milk production, but also more health problems and a higher culling rate. The straw yard systems seem to have advantages with regard to lameness, fertility, and injuries, but a higher risk for mastitis.

EPrint Type:Conference paper, poster, etc.
Type of presentation:Paper
Keywords:Organic dairy farming, milk production, welfare parameters, influencing factors
Subjects: Animal husbandry > Production systems
Research affiliation: International Conferences > 2005: 1st ISOFAR Conference > 2005: 1st ISOFAR Conference
Deposited By: ISOFAR
ID Code:4371
Deposited On:18 Nov 2006
Last Modified:12 Apr 2010 07:30
Document Language:English
Refereed:Not peer-reviewed
Additional Publishing Information:The paper archived here is the final paper submitted by the authors to the conference Researching Sustainable Systems.
The final and edited papers are available at the following publication:
Köpke, Ulrich; Niggli, Urs; Neuhoff, Daniel; Cornish, Peter; Lockeretz, Willie und Willer, Helga, (Hrsg.) (2005) Researching Sustainable Systems. Proceedings of the First Scientific Conference of the International Society of Organic Agriculture Research (ISOFAR) Held in Cooperation with the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM) and the National Association for Sustainable Agriculture, Australia (NASAA), 21 - 23 September 2005, Adelaide Convention Centre, Adelaide, South Australia. Research Institute of Organic Agriculture FiBL, CH-Frick, and International Society of Organic Agriculture Research (ISOFAR), c/o Institute of Organic Agriculture (IOL), DE-University of Bonn. http://orgprints.org/4013/
Distribution: Paper copies may be ordered from FiBL at a cost of 28 Euros plus mailing costs (see FiBL shop at http://www.fibl.org/shop); FiBL order number 1394. A PDF version of the proceedings is available free of charge for ISOFAR members via the member area of www.isofar.org.
The final papers submitted by the authors are available at http://orgprints.org/view/projects/int-conf-isofar-2005.html.

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