Farmers Use Light to Boost Milk Production - Energy Watch News

Farmers Use Light to Boost Milk Production

James Bruna of South Alston Farm in Callington, Cornwall, is one of hundreds of UK diary farmers who has seen milk production boosted…by LED lighting. Bruna estimates that his investment in new LED lights has increased yield by 2,000 litres per cow lactation period, an increase of a fifth over average. Milking cows exposed to 16 to 18 hours of light with a brightness of at least 160-200 lux followed by six to eight hours of darkness have consistently increased their milk yield. As in humans, light hitting the eye of the cow sends a signal to suppress the release of the hormone melatonin. Cows use the daily pattern of melatonin to set their internal clock, influencing the secretion of a number of other hormones, including insulin-like growth factor-1.

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