Pics: A 1,550ha Swedish dairy farm that milks 720 cows

Some 720 dairy cows are milked three times a day on the Skottorps Sateri dairy farm in Sweden which is run by Lars Inge Gunnarsson.

He started off in 1982 with 35ha and 90 cows, now he has 1,550ha; 700ha of which is owned arable land and the other 800ha is rented.

On average each cows produces 10,900L/year and the farm sends 7m litres of milk a year, with the bulk of it being sent to Arla.

The cows on the farm are made up of Holstein (80%) and Swedish Red & White (20%). They are fed on a mixture of silage, maize and grain twice a day.

The cows are milked three times a day by cluster milking and while some farms of a similar size may have robotic milking, Lars Inge is “very satisfied” with his system.

Lars Inge said that the end of milk quotas will impact milk production in Sweden.

For sure, I think we have already seen the European dairies are worried about increased production.

“It is also increasing in other countries around the world. Everyone is a little worried; a small surplus on a certain market will have an impact,” he said.

Meat production 

In total there is 2,340 cattle on the farm and some 20% of the €5.5m turnover on the farm comes from meat production from Charolais on the farm.

Lars Inge also has 110 suckler cows and keeps male dairy bulls for fattening. He also said that he buys in bulls for fattening.

Last year they delivered 1,000 animals for slaughter.

Cheese production

A cheese-making operation was started 10 years ago on the farm and makes 300t of cheese each year, Ingmarie Muller-Uni (Lars Inge’s cousin) said.

All the milk comes from the farm and it is pasteurised, but not separated, so the cream also goes into the cheese.

“It has a 35% fat content and the facility produces mild to more ripened cheeses as well as speciality cheeses,” she said.

Energy production

The farm also produces its own energy and it has two windmills; one with a capacity of 150kw and another with a capacity of 600kw.

There is also a straw boiler on the farm which is used to heat houses on the land.

The farm also has a bio-gas plant which uses mostly maize and manure. This produces electricity and hot water for the dairy and houses on the property.