Gelukkig zijn er in Australië ook koeien :-) Buren van Annie & Matt regelden dat we op bezoek konden bij Ray & Jan Brown. Het was een ontzettend gezellig bezoek. Leuk dat we Ray & Jan en Grace, de moeder van Ray hebben leren kennen. Ray wilde graag meewerken aan de reportage voor 'Boerderij', mits ik bereid was mee te helpen met het melken :-)
Fortunately, there are also cows in Australia :-) Neighbours from Annie & Matt arranged a visit to Ray & Jan Brown. It was a very pleasant visit. Nice to meet Ray & Jan and Grace, the mother of Ray. Ray was happy to contribute to the reportage for 'Boerderij' (the website from a Dutch agricultural magazine) if I was willing to help with the milking :-)
Dat liet ik me geen 2x zeggen. Eerst even de kat uit de boom kijken...
I was very eager to do that. But first wait to see which way the cat jumps...
en dan de handen uit de mouwen steken. Geheel vlekkeloos verliep het niet... na jarenlang niet gemolken te hebben, kon ik niet voorkomen dat zo nu en dan een melkbeker de vloer raakte. Waar je voor uit moet kijken, is dat er dan mest en andere vuiligheid opgezogen wordt, dat rechtstreeks naar de melktank gaat. Gelukkig toonde Ray na afloop een schoon melkfilter... een pak van mijn hart :-)
and then put one's shoulder to the wheel. Not entirely flawless ... after years not having milked, I could not avoid occasionally that the milking equipment hit the floor. Where to watch out for is to suck up dung and other dirt, that goes straight into the milk tank. Fortunately after milking Ray showed me a clean milking filter... a load was lifted off my mind :-)
Voor 'Boerderij' heb ik deze reportage gemaakt (klik op de link).
Hieronder de tekst in het Engels...
For the website from 'Boerderij' I made this photo reportage (Dutch version).
Below the English version...
Cooling milk with an icebank in Down Under
Already for 20 years Ray Brown is cooling the milk through an icebank cooler. The connected heat recovery unit ensures lower electricity costs. This installation is also being built at the new location.
This is Ray Brown (56). His dairy farm is located in Branxton, New South Wales, Australia, 2 hours driving north from Sydney. First we will have a look at the current location.
Ray Brown and his wife Jan (53) who is working and thinking behind the scenes and has a job outside, are standing next to the heat exchanger which is part of the icebank cooler. Ray Brown has installed this system in 1993. The Browns are very satisfied about this system and are building this also at the new location.
Currently they are living about 4 km away from the farm and Grace (83), the mother of Ray, lives in the house on the farm. By consolidating several smaller farms and the purchase of an intermediate pasture, the Browns now have a contiguous area of 307 acres (124 hectares). The six properties located in this area, which are in ownership by the Browns, are rented out.
The icebank cooler works as follows ... To cool off the milk from 38 degrees to 3.5, a heat exchanger is being used which is fed from an insulated ice tank of 3000 liters.
Through the tank are running tens of meters of stainless steel tube filled with coolant.
With the aid of a compressor (refrigerator principle) the tank is being cooled during the night. This results in large amounts of ice around the tubes. The advantage is that this happens with cheap electricity at night.
Should power fail, which often happened in Australia due to the overhead powersystem, Ray has access to a power generator. This can run many hours on a tractor.
During milking, the cold liquid is passed through the heat exchanger where the milk flows through. The result is a cooling in one step from 38 to 3.5 degrees. The cooled milk goes directly into the milk tank outside. The advantage of the one step cooling is that incoming milk has almost the same temperature as the milk in the tank. Therefore, there is less chance of bacterial growth.
Ray Brown: "I connect the compressor section to a heat recovery system, so that the heat generated during the cooling, feeds the hot water supply from the farm and the house. For this I installed three boilers of 200 liters in cascade, of which the last one is post heated. A system that saves us quite some electricity costs. "
Brown is not completely satisfied. He wants to increase the capacity with this new heat exchanger. That won’t happen at the current location. The Browns are building a new milk stable on a location nearby.
We're going to have look at the new location. As a real Ozzie, Ray has a kelpie who accompanies him on all his trips
Along the way we pass the cows who are outside all year round. While making this report (January 2013), New South Wales is experiencing a heat wave and a lot of irrigation is necessary. This is immediately visible in the electricity bill which is 2.5 times as high as otherwise. Normally the bill is about 5,000 Australian dollars for 3 months.
Reason for the new building is the Browns want to live closer to their business. This is not possible at the current location. In the future they will build their new house near the new milk stable (the roof on the foreground).
The Browns have paid almost 500,000 Australian dollars for the new building. This amount can be broken down as follows: $362.000 for the buildings (two roofs for the milk stable and the machinery). The connection from the road (electricity) has cost $77.000...
$21.700 for the silos…
$5.500 for the secondhand Hodge Herringbone (2x10, 45 degrees)…
And $18.000 for the milk tank and the cooling system, also secondhand.
The last fiscal year (July 2012 til June 2013) Ray Brown supplied with 130 cows nearly 800,000 liters of milk to Dairy Farmers Milk Co Operative Limited (situation early June). The average milk price for this period is 46.75 Australian dollar cent per liter. The milk quota was abolished in 2000. The Browns then had a quota of 38 cans, which equates to 1,725 liter per day.
Photos: Henk Meulendijks
Text: Vera Wijnveen