NZ Dairy Summer 2021

78 | nzdairy Tailored solutions from Advanced Dairy Barns Richard Loader The virtues of dairy wintering barns are plenty, offering benefits to the environment, the cows and dairy farmers’ bottom line results. A sister company to Winton Engineering, Advanced Dairy Barns Ltd has been specialising in the turnkey production of wintering barns since 2002 when its first order was taken. “One of our local Southland farmers came to us with a European design and we built it for him,” says Managing Director Rodger Short. “Then we built a second one for him and decided there was a market for wintering barns and improved the design to cater for New Zealand’s larger herds.” Based in Winton, Advanced Dairy Barns mainly operates around the Southland area for turnkey projects but also supplies structural steel kitsets to other builders as far north as Methven. The end-to-end package provided by Advanced Dairy Barns includes design, building and resource consents, importation of matting and brushes, fabrication, erection and total project management. “This year we’re building four barns. There are two clients with two sheds on each farm. One client has two sheds spaced fifteen metres apart, holdingfive hundred cows each. The other client has two sheds paced eighteen metres apart holding sixteen hundred and fifty cows.” Rodger says the increase in demand has come from increasing environmental pressure on farmers but economics has also played a key part. “You’re looking at around $3300, inclusive of all the materials and parts. If it’s a 500-stall barn you’re looking at $1.65 million. There’s a high cost in building one of these barns but there’s also good return on investment. If farmers have the equity or can borrow to build the barn, the return on that money out performs what they will pay for the money.” While wintering barns house and feed cows off paddocks during winter, the majority of farmers also use them as a feedpad on the shoulders of winter to avoid feed wastage. “More farmers also use them for calving at the end of winter. Some farmers put a couple of extra bays in the end of the shed for calving, while others utilise an area in the shed that has straw in it. One of our clients also uses his shed in the summer because his farm dries off in the summer and he Barn with Calving area (above). Landcorp Composting Barn (below). RURAL SERVICES » Advanced Dairy Barns Ltd doesn’t have the feed.” Rodger says farmers who use wintering barns see significant improvements in their stock health including lameness and better body condition leading to better mating and in-calf rates. “The body condition of the cow can improve quite easily over the winter by feeding less than what would be fed outside. There’s a 30% saving on feed. Put the feed out onto a paddock and half of it is trampled into the mud. “The other big advantages are being able to milk out of the shed at the shoulders of the season and capturing all the effluent in the shed for use when the pasture is growing well and absorbing all the nutrients. “As we get more and more pressure in the environment from greenhouse gasses there will be more and more demand for cow barns.” Manufacturer of cold rolled steel purlin systems METALCRAFT ROOFING CHRISTCHURCH MSS PURLIN AND GIRT MC PURLIN AND GIRT MS TOPHAT PURLIN AND GIRT GENERAL PURPOSE BRACKETS CAMLOCK BRACING SYSTEM Call: 03 349 7350 SPOUTING READY MIX CONCRETE - GRAVEL WINTON HEAD OFFICE P.O. BOX 34, Winton Phone: (03) 236 6580 e: Te Anau: (03) 249 7051 Lumsden: (03) 236 6580