We live in a country that depends on dairy products for sustenance including milk, Greek yogurt, butter and cheese. Milking cows is an important task to ensure people have access to the dairy products they need. Now robots are being used to feed and milk cows. The process is turning out to be more pleasant for the cows and dairy farmers.
In Days Gone By
Once upon a time, farmers had to be awake before dawn to milk the cows and get started on their chores. From feeding the livestock to taking care of the crops, farmers did most of the work manually. It was a demanding time schedule that could be turned upside down if a single circumstance went array. It can be painful when a cow has to wait to be milked. Certainly this put pressure on the dairy farmers.
The Recent Past
In the recent past, mechanized turntables have been used to milk multiple cows at one time. For awhile, this system was a more efficient way than milking one cow at a time. It enabled the staff to do other things as more cows were being milked in less time. However, these systems are now becoming antiquated in the face of advanced technologies such as robotics.
Robotics to Milk Cows
According to the New York Times, robots milk cows at the Borden dairy farm in New York and let them determine their own schedules for milking. This ensures optimum comfort for each cow. Tom Borden, owner of O.A. Borden, noted the view was improved as usually the back end of the cow is all you see at most milking parlors. Machines such as the Astronaut A4 help by milking the cows as farmers take care of other work. Cows never get hungry as the robots take care of that, too.
Kinder to Cows and Farmers
Often people question the value of new technologies. God cares about the animals and wants us to be kind to them. Robots let cows set their own hours and get individualized service. They are able to move around more and don't have to experience the pain of waiting to be milked. Farmers appreciate having more time to build a rapport with the cows and take care of them rather than focusing solely on milking.
As Christians, we strive to create a kinder world where people and animals feel more comfortable. It is amazing to think of robotics being used in farming, laboratory medicine, warehousing and retail outlets. The conscientious use of robotics and technology can improve the world around us, helping us to be better Christians to animals and each other.
Who teaches us more than the beasts of the earth and makes us wiser than the birds of the heavens? Job 35:11
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