How a chlorine-free wash programme could benefit your milking equipment cleaning regime

Dairy farmers are now turning to the use of a chlorine-free wash programme in their daily cleaning routines to disinfect and clean their milking equipment.

Chlorine-free products help to greatly reduce the levels of trichloromethane (TCM) and chlorite residues in milk.

The Kersia chlorine-free wash programme

Kersia takes great pride in manufacturing effective chlorine-free based chemical products, specifically designed to provide a robust cleaning programme for milking-machines and bulk-tanks.

Its five-stage cleaning cycle programme has been created to provide a simple and comprehensive clean before and after use of the farms milking equipment, as well as an extensive rinse at each stage of the milk production process.

  • Stage 1: Wash all jets and clusters and remove the milk filters;
  • Stage 2: Rinse the system thoroughly with at least 14-15L of clean cold water;
  • Stage 3: For a chlorine-free cleaning programme, Kersia recommends Autosan Blue at 0.5% for hot washes and 1% for cold washes. Remember to ensure that the calibration of the machine is correct;
  • Stage 4: Circulate the product for at least 10 minutes to ensure that all areas of the system are reached, thoroughly cleaned and then run the mixture to waste;
  • Stage 5: Rinse the system thoroughly with at least 10L of clean cold water, whilst adding Virodox (peracetic acid) 20ml/10L of water (0.2% dosage rate).
Image-source-Kersia
The Kersia five-stage cleaning cycle

At least three times per week incorporate a hot acid product such as Autoscan Red to remove mineral deposits using water at 70º minimum temperature. This is also suitable for use in milk bulk-tanks to complete the chlorine-free programme.

Your chlorine-free wash programme

Kersia recommends the following chlorine-free cleaning products for your milking parlours daily and weekly wash programmes.

Autosan Blue

Autosan Blue is a low foaming, alkaline, chlorine-free detergent providing a high performance caustic alkaline solution which can be used in both hot and cold water.

Autosan Blue is suitable for use in all milking parlours, bulk milk-tanks and robotic/electronic cleaning systems.

It is available in 20L, 200L and 1,000L IBC containers.

Clearway Plus

Clearway Plus is a chlorine-free circulation powder specially formulated for use in hard water areas, for cold wash cleaning. It can be used hot or cold at a usage rate of 226g/45L of water.

It is available as a 20kg pack size.

Virodox – Peracetic Acid

Virodox is a peracetic acid based sanitiser which is used in the final rise of automatic cluster and flushing systems.

It is available in 25L and 200L drums.

Autoscan Red

Autoscan Red is an extra strength, low foaming, phosphoric acid cleaner. It is suitable for use with all automated milking equipment including robots.

It is available in 20L and 200L drums.

‘An added positive’

Irish dairy farmer Pat Kiely from Co. Waterford has been farming since 1976. Today he runs a 300ac dairy farm alongside his nephew Ciaran Hanrahan, who is responsible for the daily care of over 270 dairy cows.

Pat has been using Kersia’s Autosan Blue, Autoscan Red and Novo Spray teat dip for over three years. Amongst some of the most dramatic results after switching to Kersia’s chlorine-free wash programme was the significantly reduced total bacterial count (TBC) and thermoduric counts.

The reduction in instances of mastitis in the herd from moving onto the teat dip was an added positive. The reduction in mastitis cases has vastly reduced expensive vet bills and widespread antibiotic use as a part of a programme of selective dry cow therapy (SDCT).

Pat said: “We have been using Kersia products for over three years now and we have recorded consistently low TBC counts of between 3,000 and 6,000 and thermoduric counts of 100 or less.

“Our excellent hot water supply provides us with water at 90º and a solution circulation temperature of 70º. This, coupled with the use of our excellent Kersia chlorine-free wash programme products, has undoubtedly helped us to achieve and maintain these results.”

Mike Kissane, from Listowel Co, Kerry, has been using Kersia’s Autosan Blue and Autoscan Red on his dairy farm in Listowel, as part of his chlorine-free cleaning programme since June 2019.

Mike Kissane has been farming outside Listowel, Co. Kerry, since 1997 on approximately 150ac. He is milking cows through a 20-unit Dairymaster herringbone milking parlour.

Since June 2019, Mike has been using Autosan Blue and Autoscan Red on both his bulk-tank and milking machine. When initially looking for a chlorine-free product, he wanted liquid products to suit his automatic washer that were easy to use and were effective in both hot and cold water.

The products also needed to be easily integrated with his automatic tank and milking machine washer. Above all else considering the many costs associated with dairy farming, Mike wanted products that were competitively priced and put simply – they needed to work as effectively as the products before them which contained chlorine.

With all these prerequisites in mind, Mike sourced both Autosan Blue and Autoscan Red from his local Kerry Agri branch in Listowel. For the back-flush system on his milking machine Mike also uses peracetic acid (Virodox).

When asked if the Kersia/Kilco products met his expectations, Mike said they did.

We have mineral deposits in our water which can be hard to wash from the machine but thankfully, despite the absence of chlorine, we achieved the results we wanted from using the Kersia products in conjunction with the correct volume of hot water.

“So far, washing without chlorine in these products has not been an issue for us.”

Find out more

To find out how to implement an effective chlorine-free cleaning programme, please contact your Kersia representatives:

Kersia can provide a complete cleaning solution for a chlorine-free wash programme for all types of milking parlours. Its range of specially developed products can reduce chlorate and TCM levels in milk whilst consistently providing low bacterial counts through effective cleaning.

A study undertaken by Teagasc Moorepark at Kilworth research farm in 2018 found that a chlorine-free routine was as effective as standard cleaning protocols already in place and at a comparable daily cost.

You can read more about the Moorepark trial results on Kersia’s website by clicking here

For more information about how to implement an effective chlorine-free wash programme for your dairy farm, please contact one of the team on the above numbers.