Animal Welfare on 7,297 German Dairy Farms: Results of the pilot study of the "QM-Dairy Sustainability Tool"
Location: Braunschweig, Germany - IDF Welfare Action Area: Husbandry practices and Health management - Resource based measure: • Measure 1: Freedom of movement: 77% of farms have loose housing systems; this applies to 93% of cows. Approximately one quarter of the farms use tie-stalls. 10% of farms kept their lactating cows in tie-stalls year-round; this applies to 3% of all cows. • Measure 2: Access to outdoor climate: Two-thirds of the farms offer outdoor access for lactating cows (excercise yard and/or pasture), while 71% of the farms provide outdoor access to their dry cows. • Measure 3: Space: 21% of all cows are kept in overcrowded housingsystems (cow/lying-space ratio >1). Animal based measure: • Measure 1: Lameness: One in five farms stated that the percentage of cows with signs of lameness in the herd was at least 15% at the last self-check. • Measure 2: Cow mortality: 37% of the farms have a cow mortality rate of 2% or less. • Measure 3: Udder health: In 71% of the farms at least half of the cows have a somatic cell count of < 100,000 cells/ml milk.