Lifetime production of Dutch cows rises to 37,401 kg of milk

Lifetime production of Dutch cows rises to 37,401 kg of milk

In the financial year 2021-2022, the average lifetime production of dairy cows in the Netherlands rose by almost 1,800 kg to 37,401 kg of milk. The lifespan of the cows rose by almost two months.

This emerged from the annual statistics from the CRV Cooperative’s milk production register (MPR) published today.

Record lifetime production

The dairy cows in the Netherlands have never previously achieved a higher lifetime production than over the past financial year from September 2021 to September 2022. Over their lifetime, the cows culled from Dutch dairy farms had produced an average of 37,401 kg of milk with 4.37% fat and 3.57% protein (2,971 kg of fat and protein), 1,777 kg of milk and 145 kg of fat and protein more than in the previous financial year.

The rising average lifetime production can also be seen in the increasing number of cows with a lifetime production of more than 100,000 kg of milk. Last year 3,953 cows passed this milestone, almost 700 more than in the previous financial year. In total, 297 Dutch cows produced more than 10,000 kg of fat and protein.

Almost two-month longer lifespan

The higher lifetime production is partly due to a 53-day longer lifespan. The productive lifespan - i.e. the number of days between the first calving date and the last sampling date - increased by 57 days due to a shorter rearing period. In addition, the culled Dutch cows had also produced more milk: an average of 29.3 kg per milking day this year compared to 29.0 kg last year. The calving interval remained stable at 408 days. The average Dutch MPR farm had 109 dairy cows in the past financial year.

Less milk and lower components

Average milk production per lactation fell during the past financial year. The rolling annual average for the 12,264 Dutch MPR farms came out at 9,068 kg of milk with 4.38% fat and 3.55% protein, which is equivalent to 721 kg of fat and protein and an annual economic result of 2,066. Milk production was therefore 123 kg lower than it was last year, with the fat component dropping by 0.05% and the protein component by 0.06%.

Rosegaar cows achieve highest lifetime production

As was the case last year, the list of farms whose current cows had the highest lifetime production was headed by Arie Jan Rosegaar of Pesse. His forty cows, which had a mean age of eight years and two months, produced an average of 72,190 kg of milk with 4.20% fat and 3.39% protein, resulting in 5,480 kg of fat and protein. With fourteen cows producing 5,343 kg of fat and protein, Provimi’s experimental farm of Velddriel is not far behind. This farm already held second place last year. Once again, the Oudenes family of Stolwijk took third place with 21 cows achieving an average lifetime production of 4,544 kg of fat and protein.

Frontrunner’s cows over ten years old

The list of farms whose culled cows had the highest lifetime production was headed by the Mulder partnership in Nieuwerbrug. Over the past year, the livestock farmers culled twelve cows with an average age of ten years and three months, and an average lifetime production of 76,413 kg of milk with 4.46% fat and 3.49% protein, giving 6,080 kg of fat and protein. In second place was the Brouwer-Leemhuis dairy farm in Albergen. The twelve culled cows from this farm had been responsible for a lifetime production of 5,721 kg of fat and protein. The Valk-Jansen partnership from Dalfsen took third place with 22 culled cows having achieved an average lifetime production of 5,666 kg of fat and protein.

Change to publication of annual statistics

The CRV cooperative has changed the publication of the MPR annual statistics. Milk production figures from individual farms and cows are no longer published, so they are not mentioned in this press release. Livestock farmers are still sent their own statistics on paper, allowing them to see their farm’s rolling annual average compared to that of their peers.

In addition, livestock farmers can view their own figures on the CRV Cooperative’s website. Access to this part of the website is restricted to livestock farmers through their ‘Mijn CRV’ account. After logging in, livestock farmers can see which position their farm holds in the national, provincial and district (Netherlands) or departmental (Flanders) rankings. They can also compare their rolling annual average with that of peers with the same milking system or the farm size.

Long-lasting herds are source of inspiration

“MPR figures for individual farms can be considered confidential information. We no longer feel it appropriate to share it in the public domain”, says Paul Vriesekoop, Manager of Cooperative Affairs at CRV, about the decision of the Members Council to stop publishing the figures.

The CRV cooperative makes an exception when it comes to publishing the top 10 farms achieving the highest lifetime production. “Dutch and Flemish dairy farmers can be proud of the longevity of their cows and we believe these figures should be communicated to a wide audience. Livestock farmers who deliver outstanding achievements deserve a place on the podium. They can be a source of inspiration to their peers”, Vriesekoop believes.