Tom Rawson and Charlie Crotty
Supa4 Mid-Line System
28 a side
2500 cows over six farms
"We love the Waikato Milking Systems kit because it’s simple to use and because of its reliability"
Evolution Farming operates three different parlours across six dairy farms but co-owner Tom Rawson said it’s the quality of the Waikato Milking Systems brand that “stands out a mile”.
Tom Rawson and Charlie Crotty run Evolution Farming, which Tom describes as a “relatively new” dairy business based in Dewsbury, Yorkshire in the UK.
Evolution Farming specialises in operating farms for land owners on either a straight lease or a profit-share mechanism.
The company uses social media to make a career in agriculture attractive to new starters.
“Evolution Farming operates six dairy farms plus some beef, sheep and arable over around 7000 acres (2832 hectares),” Tom said.
“We’re milking three herds of organic Jersey cows and three herds of conventional Crossbreds all supplying milk co-op, Arla.
“We’ve got around 2500 cows altogether and we aim for between 5000 and 6000 litres per cow with between 500kgs and 1000kgs of bought-in meal per head, per year.”
The business employs 30 full-time and part-time staff and will milk 300 autumn (UK season) calvers on a 160ha farm.
Early in 2019, Tom ordered a new 28/56 Waikato Supa4 Mid-Line milking system to replace a 20-year-old Waikato Milking Systems, 24/48 parlour.
The refit project involved stripping out the old system and using the existing building to install the new 28/56 Waikato Supa4 parlour.
Work started in September 2019 and Tom said the project was completed in about 20 working days, including time towards “ripping out the old plant”.
Tom’s keeping the system’s technology specs low-key, on purpose, to ensure it’s a simple parlour for everyone to use.
Some of the standard features he liked included the SmartDrive, which improves milk pumping and milk cooling efficiency.
The new parlour is also fitted with SmartPuls as a standard feature, which cleanly and gently milks cows.
“We love the Waikato Milking Systems kit because it’s simple to use and because of its reliability,” Tom said.
“We’ve found the Supa4 systems are easy to service. They’re also very easy to use which is great when it comes to teaching new comers how to operate the systems.”
Tom said he couldn’t justify installing a rotary milking parlour “on this size farm” but the new Waikato Supa4 fits perfectly into the original building which housed the previous system.
He said he had only completed limited research before deciding to refit with Waikato Milking Systems.
“We operate three different makes of parlour on our farms. Two were inherited from farms we bought and another in line system was installed last year.
“Waikato Milking Systems stands out a mile as the best parlour to own and operate.
“We’re looking now to upgrade two older double-up parlours to Waikato Milking Systems equipment for 2020.”
The milking system was fitted by Shepherd Dairy Supplies, sold through Waikato Milking Systems sales rep Brent Crothers.