Connected Cow: Game-changer for China’s Dairy Farmers
As the third-largest milk production country in the world, China has over 14 million dairy cows. However, Chinese dairy farmers are continually concerned about production as each cow is only capable of producing 2.5 tons of milk per year. The total milk production of China is only one-fifth of that of developed countries, which has a significant impact on the income of dairy farmers. Increasing milk production depends on accurately monitoring and predicting a cow’s estrous cycle. Despite their considerable experience, farmers can miss the best mating times and as result USD 350 will be lost for each missed chance of a milk cow’s estrous cycle in 21 days. In 2017, China Telecommunications Corporation’s NB-IoT-based Connected Cow project helped dairy farmers overcome these challenges. Dairy herds wear mobile connected sensors which collect biometric information on the cows’ body temperature, pulse, and daily movements to let them graze further and better manage milk production. The results are nothing short of impressive – after deploying the Connected Cow project, dairy farmers in the Northwest of China have increased their annual revenue by 50%, equal to USD 420 per cow per year. The connected cow is empowering farmers to achieve better results, which is a vital step towards ensuring dairy farming in China continues to thrive.