The aim of the study is to develop a scoring system for dairy farms in order to give specific information about the product and production process of milk. The scoring system, based on a multi-dimensional approach, was developed on the basis of data collected in 29 Italian dairy farms and included different aspects. For the evaluation of animal welfare, a selection of indicators set up in the European ProjectVR assessment protocol for cattle 2009 was used. Environmental sustainability of milk production was assessed by a cradle-to-farm-gate Life Cycle Assessment. Laboratory analyses were carried out on bulk tank milk to evaluate microbiological, nutritional and nutraceutical quality. Nineteen variables were selected and retained to define six quality aspects: animal welfare, environmental and economic sustainability of farms, microbiological, nutritional and nutraceutical quality of milk. Each farm was visited twice; each visit received, for each variable, a score between 1 and 3 based on the frequency distribution of that variable in the farm sample. The relation among farm characteristics and quality aspects showed the importance to maximise dairy efficiency to improve environmental and economic sustainability of the farms and the inclusion of hay in dairy cows’ ration to enhance the nutraceutical and nutritional quality of milk. The proposed multi-dimensional scoring system is a practical tool: for the farmer, to support decisions for improving the quality of the product and the productive process; for the dairy company, as a value-added opportunity; for the consumer, who receives detailed information about nutritional characteristics and production system of dairy products.

Multi-dimensional assessment and scoring system for dairy farms / M. Zucali, G. Battelli, M. Battini, L. Bava, M. Decimo, S. Mattiello, M. Povolo, M. Brasca. - In: ITALIAN JOURNAL OF ANIMAL SCIENCE. - ISSN 1828-051X. - 15:3(2016 Aug), pp. 492-503. [10.1080/1828051X.2016.1218304]

Multi-dimensional assessment and scoring system for dairy farms

M. Zucali;M. Battini;L. Bava;M. Decimo;S. Mattiello;
2016-08

Abstract

The aim of the study is to develop a scoring system for dairy farms in order to give specific information about the product and production process of milk. The scoring system, based on a multi-dimensional approach, was developed on the basis of data collected in 29 Italian dairy farms and included different aspects. For the evaluation of animal welfare, a selection of indicators set up in the European ProjectVR assessment protocol for cattle 2009 was used. Environmental sustainability of milk production was assessed by a cradle-to-farm-gate Life Cycle Assessment. Laboratory analyses were carried out on bulk tank milk to evaluate microbiological, nutritional and nutraceutical quality. Nineteen variables were selected and retained to define six quality aspects: animal welfare, environmental and economic sustainability of farms, microbiological, nutritional and nutraceutical quality of milk. Each farm was visited twice; each visit received, for each variable, a score between 1 and 3 based on the frequency distribution of that variable in the farm sample. The relation among farm characteristics and quality aspects showed the importance to maximise dairy efficiency to improve environmental and economic sustainability of the farms and the inclusion of hay in dairy cows’ ration to enhance the nutraceutical and nutritional quality of milk. The proposed multi-dimensional scoring system is a practical tool: for the farmer, to support decisions for improving the quality of the product and the productive process; for the dairy company, as a value-added opportunity; for the consumer, who receives detailed information about nutritional characteristics and production system of dairy products.
nutraceutical; environmental impact; animal welfare; microbial quality; milk
Settore AGR/19 - Zootecnica Speciale
Individuazione di modelli di aziende zootecniche per produzioni di eccellenza di latte e derivati
ITALIAN JOURNAL OF ANIMAL SCIENCE
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/2434/432451
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