It has been ten years since Lely Center Eglish opened its doors in County Tyrone, and to mark the occasion the company is hosting a joint anniversary open day with Irwin Farm Supplies on Tuesday 19th June.
Lely Center Eglish is headed up by Jim Irwin, and his wife Jenny, and is responsible for Northern Ireland and Donegal. In 2014 Lely Center Eglish unveiled a new purpose-built facility scaling to almost 5,000 square feet.
“Taking on the Lely franchise was a big commitment, but we are part of a world-wide concept, and the growth of the business over the last ten years has far exceeded our initial expectations. Northern Ireland is densely populated with dairy farms, and robotic technology has a significant part to play in the future of the dairy industry. New generation farmers are warmly embracing the benefits of farm automation,” explained Jim Irwin.
Lely is the world’s market leader for robotic technology, and is celebrating 25 years since the launch of its first Astronaut milking robot. “Robotic milking represents a new revolution in milk production, and over the last ten years the concept of robotic milking has evolved dramatically,” explained Jim Irwin.
“When we started there were 35 Lely robots in Northern Ireland, and the Astronaut A3 model was at the cutting-edge of robotic milking technology. In 2010 the company launched the successful A4 with iflow design for improved cow access; and today there are now more than 300 Lely Astronaut robots milking over 16,000 cows in Northern Ireland.”
In April this year Lely unveiled the latest Astronaut A5 which focuses on enhanced cow comfort and improved energy efficiency. Its further improved hybrid arm is silent, faster, and more accurate; while the Teat Detection System (TDS) optimises udder hygiene by offering improved pre-scanning ahead of post milking spraying.
The reliability and flexibility of the Lely Astronaut means a dairy farmer can optimise his or her farm business to produce up to 1.2 million of litres of milk, and still manage a daily work schedule with more time for family and social activities.
Jim Irwin added: “Lely has a passion for innovation, and I’ve no doubt we’ll see further advancements in robotic technology over the next ten years.”
One of Lely’s most sought-after inventions is the Discovery barn cleaner.
The Discovery is battery operated and designed to maximise cow comfort and udder hygiene. It is available in two models, one of which sprays water on the surface of slats and passageways prior to scraping. The device is easy to install and is pre-programmed using an E-link remote control. Its compact dimensions allow it to pass easily under segregation gates.
Both Discovery models operate from a charging station which is usually sited conveniently within the cow shed. The Discovery can be programmed to scrape the slats at regular intervals, and its routes along the passageways are flexible, giving the option to ensure more intensive cleaning of selected areas at specified times.
The Lely Juno feed pusher is a similar concept and is suitable for use within all types of cattle sheds. It moves along the feed passage at pre-determined intervals ensuring that fresh feed is available for cows at all times of the day and night.
Another ground-breaking first was the introduction of the Lely Vector in 2011. The Vector mixing and feeding robot is a self-contained, battery operated vehicle which has the capability of feeding up to 300 animals. Forage is stored at predetermined spots in what Lely calls a ‘feed kitchen’, and the grabber, which is a mounted crane-type construction, selects the forage in a certain order and puts it into the robot.
As the grab is filling the 600kgs capacity vertical mixer, the Vector starts to lightly mix the ingredients for a short period of time. It contains a vertical mixer auger and the counter-blade makes it suitable for a range of feeds as well as hay and straw.
Lely Center Eglish prides itself on customer service, offering a 24-hour call out and back-up service 365 days of the year.
For further information on Lely’s market-leading product portfolio visit the 10th Anniversary Open Day on Tuesday 19th June, or contact Lely Center Eglish on tel: 028 3754 8228, or Jim Irwin on mobile: 07827 884639.