REDUCING the use of antibiotics to treat mastitis in dairy herds is very much a prime focus for dairy farmers these days and there are a number of new solutions coming to the market.
Mastitis costs the global dairy industry billions of dollars every year in lost production and is one of the biggest consumers of antibiotics, or at least it was.
One of the latest developments concentrates on the use of acoustic pulse technology and its ability to treat inflammatory diseases in human healthcare.
Based in Israel, Armenta has adapted this human care technology to increase the health of cattle by focusing on mastitis, which is also an inflammatory disease. The project has received over €2 million in funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Program.
Following a number of trials on dairy farms across the world the company found its new test had a success rate of over 70 percent tackling mastitis.
Now, for the first time, this technology can be used to treat dairy cows quickly, easily, and cost-effectively. A unique, simple-to-use, lightweight hand-held device, the APT-X, provides comprehensive mastitis treatment in just three minutes, with immediate results.
During the course of field studies on dairy farms around the world, farmers and veterinarians applied the appropriate Armenta course of therapy to hundreds of cows with clinical or subclinical mastitis.
The equipment was comfortable to use and performed well, the treatments were simple to administer, and the animals displayed no resistance.
The company says the real impact was on the cattle’s health and milk production which after treatment showed a mastitis recovery rate of over 70 percent with normal SCC levels and infection-free.
Also, there was around 10 percent more milk produced daily using the APT-X than without treatment. These improvements in productivity and animal welfare meant an 80 percent reduction in culling rates, and a measurable and rapid improvement in farm profitability.
How Acoustic Technology works
The APT-X system consists of a pulse generator (APT-X1) which is a hand-held device that generates the acoustic pulses through ballistic impact. It also contains an applicator unit (AM-1) which is disposable and needs to be replaced every 20 to 80 cows.
And of course there is the control unit, high-pressure air tank, air compressor and accessories.
The design of Armenta’s APT solution means it uses pulses that are generated via ballistic impact powered by high pressurised air covering a large area at therapeutic levels and all that in a short treatment time.