The feeding regime for the cows is extremely important and we work with Lely and other experts on altering the nutritional content to maximise benefit for the cows. The farm crop strategy is related to the food required and we currently grow 600 acres of grass and 900 acres of cereals.
Mackie's is one of the largest astronaut milking robot farms in Europe. This is a voluntary access system of milking. In 2013 we renewed our milking “robots” with five of the latest technology from our supplier, Lely Industries, Netherlands. Lely pride themselves on a system that is built around the welfare of the cow, a new style of farm management whereby the decisions shift from the farmer to the cow. The cows milk themselves by going into the machine — which recognises the cow and fits on the milking apparatus. It requires only three people to run the 500 cow herd.