ProducerSatisfaction, Efficiency and Investment Cost Factors of Different Milking Systems

Document Type


Journal/Book Title

Journal of Dairy Science

Publication Date






First Page


Last Page



A modernization survey was used to determine producer satisfaction, efficiency, and investment cost measures of different milking systems. The 301 producers included in this study expanded herd size by at least 50% for smaller herds (60 to 100 cows), or 40% for larger herds, (>100 cows) between 1994 and 1998. The milking systems analyzed and compared were stall barn with pipeline, flat barn parlor walk through and back-out, and herringbone or parallel parlor in old barn or new building. Investment costs per cow were higher for pit parlor in new building, $979. Parallel parlors had a higher cost per milking unit, $13,201, and cost per cow, $860, than herringbone, $8944 and $582, respectively. Herringbone parlors were used more hours per day, 10.75, than parallel parlors, 8.84, of similar size. Pit parlors in new buildings were more labor efficient, as measured by cows per worker hour, than stall barns with pipeline or flat parlor or pit parlors in old barns. Herringbone and parallel parlor in new building were similar for cows per hour (82 and 83) and cows per worker hour (41 and 43). Parallel or herringbone parlors in old barns had fewer cows per hour (63 and 58) than parallel or herringbone parlors in new buildings. Survey respondents showed greater satisfaction for time spent milking, physical comfort of milker, and milk quality for parlor types over stall barn with pipeline. Safety of operator satisfaction was higher for pit parlors than flat parlors or stall barn. No difference in satisfaction was observed between parallel and herringbone parlors.

This document is currently not available here.