Automated indoor feed technology developer strikes deal with US dairy farm
Under the terms of the agreement, River Ranch will purchase an on-premises indoor vertical animal feed production center which will produce its wheatgrass based feed, which the technology provider claims uses less than 5% of the water of traditional farming.
The River Ranch Dairy is home to 10,000 animals located in California's Central Valley, the highest and most concentrated milk production area in the US. The five-county region has over 1.3 million cows.
Grōv says by using its vertical farming type feed production system, a dairy farmer can produce feed using less water, a fraction of the land, while reducing the cost and carbon emissions from transportation by placing indoor feed centers next to the cattle they feed.
At the core of the Grōv-River Ranch feed center will be the Olympus Tower Farm platform. Grov's Olympus Tower can produce 5,000 to 6,000 pounds of sprouted wheat or barley grass per day using less than 5% of the water and replacing between 35 to 50 acres compared to traditional farming.
The idea is that the turn-key growing platform will allow for predictable and highly nutritious feed year-round, despite the effects of rapidly changing climates on traditional growing cycles. The technology could provide value to farmers globally, those bearing the brunt of stressed water, arable land, and climate conditions or even transportation, says the developer.
Currently in the permitting and design phase, the Grōv-River Ranch Dairy feed center's completion is anticipated later this year.
Meanwhile, in ongoing trials conducted over the past year, Grōv said dairy cows fed with its feed maintained milk production while eating less dry matter, thus improving overall feed efficiency. Trials were conducted at Bateman Mosida Farms, Utah's largest dairy.