PFM & APF total control of livestock feeding
10 November 2018
Faresin Industries has already taken steps towards precision animal husbandry, the development plan for Industry 4.0 and automation, thus offering the latest application solutions to farmers for an increasingly focused management of nutrition for animal welfare and production.
APF or Automatic Precision Feeding
In the development of mixer wagons, the use of livestock feed rationing is often underestimated because the numbers make the market less attractive.
This is not the case in Faresin Industries, however, because the company pays attention to customer requirements. As a result, a new ration control system known as APF which stands for Automatic Precision Feeding has been showcased for the very first time in the world.
This solution, which is applied to Leader PF Plus wagons, is integrated with the farm’s herd management systems from which it receives information about the quantity to administer for each animal and the number of animals housed in each stall.
Thanks to the sensors installed on the machine and pre-installed tags, once the Leader PF Plus receives the basic information, it evenly distributes the exact ration quantity set in the manger along the front of the paddock or box. All the information is recorded.
The benefits of this innovation can be clearly seen because the operator is no longer responsible for the accuracy of the rationing, thus guaranteeing perfect distribution.
PFM™ with now fully integrated NIR system
The most revolutionary new feature is PFM™ technology, which stands for Precision Feeding Measurement, an analysis system based on NIR technology (Near Infra-red Reflectance) allowing the mixer wagon to perform all the analytical food measurements just like a real laboratory, providing information to the operator on the correct preparation of the ingredient mixture.
Everything takes place continuously and in real time. The PFM™ detects the main physical and nutritional parameters of the ingredients loaded in the mixing tank and displays them all to the operator directly in the cab. The precise and continuous measurement offered by PFM™ means livestock farmers no longer have to rely on the weight of the ingredients and/or their theoretical contents obtained from laboratory analyses, which do not always correlate to what is being used.
The remote display of this information is a further benefit that allows livestock farmers, animal nutritionists and vets to control and intervene in real time, even from a distance via a simple tool, such as a smartphone. All the Leader PF Plus mixer wagons are preconfigured for integrated PFM™ with in-cab analysis display.
Homogeneity Index and Selection Index
To make the use of PFM™, which is simple and efficient even for non-technically trained staff, Faresin Industries has developed and patented the Homogeneity Index, a parameter that prompts the operator exactly when to stop mixing before distribution.
Based on the PFM™ readings, the company also developed the Selection Index, a measurement of the "negative" capacity of the animals to select individual ingredients from the unifeed in the manger and, therefore, provide livestock farmers with a new indicator for optimising ingredients and mixing.
All these readings can be collected and processed as macro data, exchanged with ISOBUS technology, with a view to applying Agriculture 4.0. These solutions are currently only available on Leader PF Plus mixer wagons.
Source: Faresin Industries S.p.A.