An easy and effective way to identify empty cows

Dairy farmers can optimise profitability by shortening the calving interval and reducing the number of days that cows are empty.

The easiest way to accomplish both goals is the IDEXX milk pregnancy test – a valuable tool for dairy farmers offered by Munster AI and Progressive Genetics. The economic benefits of such a pregnancy identification system are self-evident.

Empty cows can have a major impact on profitability. Research shows that the average cost per empty cow is €5/day¹.

These costs include: the value of the milk the cow would have produced; the value of her calf; and other relevant factors. Therefore, if one cow stays empty 20 days longer than expected, the farmer losses €100 on a single cow.

Considering a 100-cow dairy farm, the impact is tremendous and can reduce profitability by as much as €10,000. The cumulative costs play an even more significant role on larger farms.

Maximum control throughout gestation

The milk pregnancy test makes it easy to minimise the days that cows are empty. Milk samples are tested in a lab to detect pregnancy-associated glycoproteins (PAGs) that are a clear marker for bovine pregnancy.

Since milk testing can be performed at any time throughout gestation, the PAG test offers major benefits.

In addition to confirming pregnancy, the test also makes it possible to detect early embryo losses and empty cows prior to dry-off.

The lab sends reliable test results to the farm, so the farmer can take appropriate action immediately.

Less handling and stress

Milk testing offers a fast, smooth and accurate way to identify empty cows. But, it also has several additional advantages.

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This non-invasive test is easily incorporated into routine milk analysis. There’s no need to add extra steps to your workflow; the samples are sent to the lab as usual and the farmer receives the results automatically.

Milk testing means less handling for the farmer and less stress for the animals. The farm also saves time and money, while maximising milk production.

Reliable, simple and trusted

Developed by IDEXX, a world leader in veterinary diagnostics, milk pregnancy tests have been performed more that 10 million times since 2013.

Milk testing is trusted by tens of thousands of farmers around the world. For more details about the IDEXX Milk Pregnancy Test contact Munster AI or Progressive Genetics. Click here for more information


  1. De Vries et al., Economics of improved reproductive performance in dairy cattle [Publication AN156].