Ida: The Intelligent Dairy Farmer’s Assistant

Oct 5, 2018

Bles Dairies is highly interested in effective solutions and new technology in the dairy sector. Through a partnership with Connecterra, an AgriTech company based in Amsterdam, Bles Dairies contributes to a more productive, humane and sustainable agriculture worldwide using sensors and artificial intelligence.

On Friday 14th of September, Connecterra held a workshop at Bles Dairies Farm about Ida: ‘the intelligent’ cow-efficiency system. This cow-monitoring system that makes use of artificial intelligence (AI) provides insights by learning the behaviour of cows and farmers. The system uses individual cow sensors to collect raw data of individual cows, as well as a whole herd.

Ida is a self-learning system, and as it learns more, new information will start appearing in the timeline. Ida Sales Director Leonie ten Dam explains: “The system informs the farmer about the situation of a cow, for example: Cow is eating more but ruminates a lot less. She is also a lot less active than usual. The farmer subsequently checks the cow physically and puts his findings in the system by confirming questions such as: Cow is showing signs of lameness. Since all farmers, who use Ida follow this method, the system will learn from all the collected data. This way, a dairy farmer in the Netherlands can receive a notification from Ida when one of his cows is suffering from inflammation, because Ida has learned from a similar situation in the past at an other dairy farm in for example Canada.”

Ida’s added value becomes clear when one looks further than the mere heat, health and feed detection. At present, there are many other cow-monitoring systems available for farmers, what makes Ida different is that it sends information directly to the cloud for analysis. With the use of the knowledge platform in “the cloud”, the system increases its accuracy and is self-learning. Ida can learn from new data in many different forms: information from a farmer’s cows, other cows worldwide, the farmer himself.

At Bles Dairies Farm, Ida has been operating since more than two months and has already proven its quality. By detecting health related problems and heat in an early stadium, the system leads to a more efficient way of farming. No matter how much knowledge the system provides, the farmer will remain the one making the decisions based on his management visions. With Ida, Bles Dairies is heading towards an insurmountable innovative future within the dairy sector.

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