KoeAlert: identify cows needing extra attention Assurance of supply of milk from healthy cows

Based on the EU Hygiene Regulation 853, the dairy farmer is responsible for supplying milk coming from healthy cows. KoeAlert has been developed in order to demonstrate that the dairy farmer has the proper knowledge to identify cows needing extra attention and to separate the milk of these cows.

The EU Controls Regulation 854, which will be replaced by the Official Controls Regulation OCR 2017/625 on 14 December 2019, requires that a certified veterinarian inspects dairy farms for compliance with the requirements of EU Hygiene Regulation 853. For this the KoeAlert veterinarian checks at least 1x per year if the dairy farmer really identifies cows needing extra attention and demonstratively separates the milk of these cows.

KoeAlert provides insight into the identification of cows needing extra attention in a well-structured way. KoeAlert makes sure that milk of cows needing extra attention is not supplied to and not processed by any food company. Milk must come from a cow that does not show any symptoms of infectious diseases communicable to humans through milk; that is in a good general state of health, presents not any signs of diseases that might result in the contamination of milk (internal from the cow itself of external) and is not suffering from any disorder of the genital tract with discharge, enteritis with diarrhoea and fever or a visible inflammation of the udder; and of which the waiting time of administered medicines has not expired yet.

This diagram ‘Identify a cow needing extra attention’ is a tool for determining whether or not a cow needs extra attention and, consequently, whether or not the milk can be supplied and processed in accordance with the EU Hygiene Regulation 853. This gives the farmer and any other milkers some tools for a well-structured way of identifying and handling cows needing extra attention.

A KoeAlert assessment performed by a veterinarian is about the process of identifying cows needing extra attention as well as separating the milk of these cows. The veterinarian observes but does not give a judgement and does not take any decisions. For this the veterinarian makes use of the document KoeAlert Assessment. The veterinarian finds out whether the dairy farmer has included the identification and separation of the milk in his business process. Is there a farm registration showing which cows need extra attention, have these animals been marked (physically by means of leg bands/chalk or visible in the milking robot) and is the milk of these animals not supplied (possibilities for separation).

Assesment for three aspects

As from 1 January 2020, dairy farms will be assessed at least once a year for three aspects in KoeMonitor:

  1. Identification of all cows needing extra attention that are present.
  2. Demonstrable separation of the milk of these cows.
  3. Additionally, on the basis of the number of cows needing extra attention it is determined whether the animal health situation at the dairy farm is a reason for a signal-controlled farm visit.

Identification of the cows needing extra attention present and the separation of the milk is to be done in accordance with the requirements of KoeAlert. The assessment is to be performed by a qualified veterinarian. This can be the own assured one-on-one veterinarian. If there are too many cows needing extra attention according to the calculation model (following the current Periodic Farm Visit), extra attention for animal health is required and a signal-controlled farm visit is to be performed by the one-on-one veterinarian or the replacement assured cattle veterinarian. The dairy company will inform the dairy farmer about this.