North OR South? Aug 2016 travel blog

the Robotic Dairy in operation being explained

Ron making friends with a day-old calf

Tamrookum Anglican church

Thursday 25th Aug at Bigriggen - and Tamrookum (dairy)

Today has dawned sunny without a cloud. Very beautiful.

This morning we have a booking for the “4Real” Robotic Dairy tour. 4Real is a brand of milk farmed, robotically milked, and then bottled all on site before distribution direct to the retail outlets.

We scampered to get to Tamrookum on time, just making it. The talk by Greg Dennis was extremely interesting - informing us how the robot milker worked, and how they had trained the cows to accept it, and accept that they were regularly controlled in which paddock to go to. Of great interest was the fact that the cows now milk 3 times a day as opposed to the traditional 2 and that has increased the milk yield by 15%. Their herd is just 250 and unfortunately they can’t sell all the bottled mil they produce so they have to sell off a tanker of milk every so often to use it all up. On principle they won’t sell to Aldi, Woollies, or Coles, because of their part in destroying the dairy industry by forcing the retail price down to $1/litre, when the price should be $2.10/litre for the farmers to survive. Hence most of Queensland’s milk is being trucked up from Victoria. Greg believes the problem can only be fixed by the public deciding to support the industry and buy branded milk at the higher prices. A very informative morning.

On to Beaudesert for lunch and check in at the Info Centre which is combined with a co-op Arts and Craft centre on the N side of town. We checked out the churches in the area and will come back on Sunday at 9:30 to the Baptist church.

Back to Bigriggen for a late afternoon cuppa, chat and showers before escaping into the caravans to escape the encroaching cold. As we sat outside we could hear the chainsaws buzzing in the background as the last of the trees were being prepared for tomorrow’s competition. We also noted that quite a few vans have come in during the day ready for the comp.

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