Driving innovation on a Wexford Dairy Farm


Island Farm spanning numerous generations is one of the most efficient and progressive dairy enterprises in the country. The family recently installed a robotic milking system.

Driving innovation on a Wexford Dairy Farm

  • ADDED
  • 10 days ago

Island Farm spanning numerous generations is one of the most efficient and progressive dairy enterprises in the country. The family recently installed a robotic milking system.

Just outside the village of Kilmuckridge in Co. Wexford lies one of the most innovative and progressive dairy farms in Ireland. At Island farm, James, Allyson and son Andrew manage a herd of 80 Holstein-Friesians and seek to push the boundaries of what can be achieved in the industry. The farm has come a long way since James’ great-grandfather, George Walsh, bought the farm in 1870, and the Walsh family are constantly seeking new and innovative ways to manage the business, most recently with their new robotic milking system.

While the robotic system had automated many aspects of the milking process, the farm desperately lacked an efficient and convenient system to meet the demand for a consistent supply of hot water. The Walsh family had been using the electricity night rate tariff to heat its immersion tank but it was now taking up to seven hours to do so. It was an increasingly impractical method of cleaning the 6,000-litre milk tank and washing down the milking parlour as well as having enough hot water left over for other necessary cleaning duties.

The Flogas Solution

James then met with Flogas sales executive David Conroy and registered gas installer Mark Murphy to find out the advantages of the Flogas Dairy water heating system. David and Mark then concluded that the installation of a 56kW Andrews Fastflo heater had the potential to produce up to 12 litres of hot water a minute (depending on water pressure at the farm), powered by a Flogas LPG bulk tank sited nearby. Plus, an easy to use temperature controller allowed the water to be heated from anywhere between 37°C to 80°C.

The instant hot water would then be piped directly into the robotic system, towards the milk storage tank and to a hose for any additional cleaning duties. In addition, the heater’s auto-ignition system would enable James to completely eliminate the hot water storage and re-heating costs that were such an issue with his previous system.

Seamless Conversion

The farm’s robotic system marked new territory for Flogas, so Mark Murphy specified the installation of a single Andrews FastFlo heater with the Flogas bulk tank for an initial trial period that could produce 12L per minute (due to water pressure). It proved so successful that a second heater was installed shortly afterwards, and now the Flogas Dairy heating system can produce 24-litres of controllable hot water per minute.

James Walsh said, “The move to Flogas has definitely benefited the health of our livestock, particularly the calves. It’s great peace of mind to be able to use as much hot water as we need at any time of day.”

To find out more about Flogas click here or call 041 983 1041 (ROI) or 028 9073 2611 (NI)

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