Institute of Organic Farming
Phone: +49 4539 8880 0
Health and performance of dairy cows in organic farming from an interdisciplinary point of view - an (intervention-) study on metabolic disorders and mastitis with regard to forage production, feeding management and husbandry practices
Studies have shown: Cows in organic dairy farms are not healthier and face mastitis as well as metabolic disorders. This joint research project aimed for an interdisciplinary approach to that phenomenon.
This project focused on the development of prevention-oriented health management strategies for metabolic disorders and udder health in organic dairy farms and to validate this approach through an interdisciplinary on-farm intervention study. Metabolic and udder health in organic dairy cows before and after partition as well as the influence of feed, nutrition and husbandry conditions were at the core of this project.
A national field survey of 100 organic dairy farms has been used to assess the risk of metabolic disorders and udder disease. The study considered production systems and plant composition of feed from grassland and ley farming; composition of feed rations, feed quality, housing conditions and milk quality to show how individual farm risk estimates relate to the metabolic and udder health situation.
A second part of the study focused on three organic experimental stations. Basic questions on feed management, udder health and metabolic disorders as well as on extensive farming were considered. The experimental approaches have been used to supplement the field results. Another focus of the study was to create sustainable communication structures to enable the transfer of knowledge among scientists, consultants and farmers.
Results of the projectare published as a projekt report, which can be downloaded: orgprints.org/25133/
7.2007 - 12.2011
7.2007 - 12.2011
Project funding number: 07OE012...22
Funding program: Bundesprogramm Ökologischer Landbau und andere Formen nachhaltiger Landwirtschaft (BÖLN)
Project status: finished