Introduction: LED can boost milk production
This new trend, especially since Brexit and the on-going pressure on prices in the agriculture industry, has farmers in England started. Analyzes show that with the right lighting, you can boost milk production with LEDs.
In this third and final blog post on how LED lighting can be used to enhance business, we will illuminate how light can be used in agriculture.
Research has shown over a number of years that with the right lighting, farmers can increase their yields by 10% through LDPP (also known as long days of stimulation of milk production), but it is only in recent years that LED has being used.
How is milk production increased?
Studies have showed exposing cows to 16-18 hours of light with a minimum brightness of 160-200 LUX, followed by 6-8 hours of darkness, have consistently increased milk production.
As is the case in humans, light hitting the eyes of the cows sends a signal to suppress the release of the hormone melatonin. Cows use the daily pattern of this hormone to set their internal clock, which affects the secretion of a number of other hormones, including insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1). In turn, any increases in IGF-1 affect the mammary gland to increase milk production in the cows.
This is a field of research showing that with the right amount of light, milk production increases by two liters a day compared to cow herds exposed to only 13 hours of constant lighting throughout a day.
Light is not just light
LED is not only boosting milk production but offers a range of benefits to farmers and the agriculture industry in general. Traditional light sources, such as fluorescent lamps, where animals are exposed to a constant light, can most likely emit stress. LEDs provide the opportunity to control settings such as dimming and flicker free light.
Lighting in agriculture is much more than just light!