AGL Energy Limited (AGL) and peak dairy industry body, Dairy Connect, today signed a Cooperation Agreement to develop energy solutions to cut costs and improve environmental sustainability for dairy farmers.
AGL Managing Director and CEO, Andy Vesey, today signed the Agreement with Dairy Connect CEO, Mr Mike Logan, on one of Australia’s most advanced robotic dairies at Upper Landsdowne, near Taree, New South Wales.
“AGL is committed to supporting and working with agriculture in regional and rural NSW and we see a tremendous opportunity working with Dairy Connect to deliver benefits to the dairy industry through new energy and renewable solutions,” Mr Vesey said.
“We are conducting digital meter trials on three dairies on the NSW mid-north coast to better understand the energy consumption and usage patterns of dairy farms.
“Dairy farms traditionally do their milking at first light and in the evening, but new technology, such as the automation we have seen on a dairy visit today, can spread milking activity across the day. This opens the door to different usage patterns that might be better suited alternative energy solutions such as solar and battery storage.
“We are using the energy solutions expertise from across AGL to develop a total energy package to members of Dairy Connect,” Mr Vesey said.
Dairy Connect CEO, Mike Logan, said dairies are intensive energy users and milk producers are always looking for solutions that lower cost and are environmentally friendly.
“It takes no electricity for a cow to eat grass and turn it into milk, but the big energy bills for dairies come from the milking, refrigeration and storage infrastructure. Electricity also is necessary for irrigation of dairy paddocks.
“For example, the milk comes out of the cow at 38 degrees Celsius and needs to cooled very quickly to four degrees. Then you have to factor in the milking and pumping systems, dairy lighting and more.
“Any energy savings that can be translated into cost reductions for farmers will be of tremendous value to producers and doing it in an environmentally sustainable way also is important,” Mr Logan said.
Once the trial is complete, the partnership will see new energy packages developed for dairy farmers that suit different types of farms.
AGL is one of Australia’s leading integrated energy companies. It is taking action to responsibly reduce its greenhouse gas emissions while providing secure and affordable energy to its customers. Drawing on over 175 years of experience, AGL serves its customers throughout eastern Australia with meeting their energy requirements, including gas, electricity, solar PV and related products and services. AGL has a diverse power generation portfolio including base, peaking and intermediate generation plants, spread across traditional thermal generation as well as renewable sources including hydro, wind, solar, landfill gas and biomass.
About Dairy Connect
Dairy Connect is a unique agricultural representative body as we are 100% focused on advocating for the distinct needs of the NSW dairy industry. Under one advocacy umbrella, we are uniting dairy farmers, manufacturers, processors and milk vendors around a shared vision and an innovative long-term industry strategy. We are committed to providing initiatives that will reinvigorate and propel the industry forward as well as provide support to dairy farming communities.