HERDWATCH Win National Innovation Award

Herdwatch were the big winners of the 2018 version of the National Dairy Innovation Awards which were sponsored by Carbery Group. The awards were presented at the National Dairy Show which took place at the Green Glens Arean. Millstreet. Co Cork last Saturday.

The overall winning innovation was the new Farm Medicine Scanner feature on the latest version of the Herdwatch application. The app is used on over 8,000 farms across Ireland and the UK and the new feature utilises the technology available in your smart phone to make recording medicines as simple as taking a picture. It allows farmers to simply scan the barcode or QR on the medicine using the Herdwatch app and have all the important information flow into the app. This simple feature is reported to save dairy farmers over 3 hours per week and increasing medicine traceability on farm.  The National Dairy Innovation Awards were judged by a panel of 6 practically minded judges which included ex-Macra and CEJA president Alan Jagoe. Paula Hynes of RTE Hardest Harvest fame and 2019 Nuffield Scholar and milk quality expert Ailish Moriarty.

The Herdwatch Farm Medicine Scanner was earlier announced as the Gold Award winner in the technology section. The other Gold Award winners were Cormac Tagging with their Tissue Sample Wristband in the engineering section and Micromax Rant Health with their dry footbath Mistral Dairy product in the science section. Cormac Tagging's new tissue sample wristband is worn on a farmer's wrist while tagging and sample taking.

It is a simple non-evasive way of holding tubes while continuing to tag. The size of the tubes has always proven problematic for farmers. The tubes are often dropped in bedding, placed in overall pockets, left on walls or lost before reaching the lab. The wristband band is also ideal to store samples securely until placed in envelope for posting to lab. Mistral, marketed in Ireland by Allen Nutrition, is a dry footbath that can be placed at the exit of the milking parlour or robot. Other placement options are in a concentrate automatic feeder or in a cubicle with a licking block.

The directions of use is for application for two days every two weeks. Trials by a French independent consultancy organisation saw a 38% decrease in lesions and a 1,2kg increase in milk production.  In terms of the increased milk production aspect of the research alone, the study concluded that the product offered a four to one return on investment
The product has the added bonus that it is certified for use in organic farming.

The remaining National Dairy Innovation Award winners who received Silver awards were ICBF for Cow’s Own Worth in the Science section. John Porter Engineering for the DCC Waterbed in Engineering section and True North Technology for their new WeighRight product in the Technology section.

Caption - The presentation of the Overall Winner of the Carbery sponsored National Dairy Innovation Award 2018 to Herdwatch include Denis Lehane. Judge. John Kirby. NDS Show Director. Sean Kelly MEP. Gearoid Kenny. Herdwatch. Paula Hynes. Judge and Alan Jagoe. Judge at the National Dairy Show. Green Glens Arena. Millstreet. Co. Cork.