A lot of levers to pull for success
Everything in family Hassbargen revolves around cows. But their main focus is breeding. For instance, Juliane Hassbargen artificially inseminates her animals herself. This report will tell you what the family Hassbargen has to keep in mind and what's important to them.
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- Here's a family picture with their trainee and the cow: (from the left) Jürgen and Heika Hassbargen, Jannes Aden, Dirk Hassbargen with their sons Jörn and Magnus including Juliane Hassbargen with Greta, the officiating Miss East Friesland.
Everything in family Hassbargen revolves around cows. Even the weather. Elsewhere it may be a cock that turns in the wind on the roof ridge, but at the farm in Barstede in East Frisia it is a black and white cow. "Our job is also our hobby," says son of the boss Dirk Hassbargen. He runs the traditional farm along with his father Jürgen, mother Heika, wife Juliane and one trainee.
185 milk cows have their home at the farm not far from Aurich. The farmers attach great importance to species-appropriate livestock rearing and make their animals comfortable. The milk cows can settle down on straw and sawdust litter in deep bed cubicles. A barn cleaner keeps the paths clean. This is important for the udders and the health of the hooves. The whole herd also gets several hours of grazing in the summer, stresses Dirk Hassbargen: "Our aim is to keep the cows as healthy as possible for as long as possible." The whole herd also gets several hours of grazing in the summer, Dirk Hassbargen emphasizes: "Our aim is to keep the cows as healthy as possible for as long as possible". The farm's replacement rate is about 15%, the average performance of the departing cows is a lifetime yield of 45,000 kilograms.
But their main focus is breeding. For instance, Juliane Hassbargen artificially inseminates her animals herself. "We only take bills that have an excellent external appearance and good health characteristics. We also pay attention to the milk production", explains the 30-year old woman. The results speak for themselves: the Hassbargens are regular entrants of the Excellent Show in Leer. This year, they took the cow Greta – four years old, calved three times – and came away with her as the reigning "Miss East Frisia".
One factor in their success is feed management. The calves receive six to seven litres of milk per day in the first three weeks, as well as the calf muesli from the CombiKorn range and later the normal TMR. Thomas Vissering, who is a sales representative at AGRAVIS Ems-Jade GmbH, is regularly in Barstede: "It's my job to provide advice on and calculate feed and to evaluate the milk controls". Collaboration, he adds, is very close and trusting and revolves around gradually leveraging business potential even further.
In addition to the farm's own TMR, the cows are also fed a feed variety from the Laktolin range that is particularly rich in Omega 3 fatty acids and contributes to the reduction of the energy gap in the first 100 days of lactation. This is why it helps lower the energy gap in the first 100 stages of lactation. Thomas Vissering says "you can see that it works from the animals because they have smooth hides with a good physical condition". The feed boosts the cows' health, well-being, milk output and fertility. They also use an electronic activity metre to precisely monitor the herd's rutting
A little while ago, Hassbargens had their cows monitored with Smaxtec for a short period. This was a way of reviewing their herd management once again. This device measures and stores the pH value in the rumen, gives data on the water supply and warns of any excessive acidification, known as acidosis. Dirk Hassbargen said that "the readings were very constant which confirmed that we're doing things right". You can get more information on this from Thomas Vissering, AGRAVIS Ems-Jade GmbH at 04945 . 9345460.