The April 26th issue of Dairy Star features the Beckmans family from Kerkhoven, MN. The family recently made the decision to build a new barn and install robotic milkers. With a college-aged son making the decision to return home to farm, Gary and Julie Beckman decided it was time to make some changes. After researching several different ideas, the Beckmans decided to build a new freestall barn and install two Lely A4 robotic milking machines, a pair of Lely Discovery mobile cleaners and one Lely Juno automatic feed pusher.
The article gives a nice overview of the process that the family went through to make their decision. Here’s a brief excerpt from the article:
A new barn was going to cost the same no matter if they installed robots or if they installed a parlor. The decision came down to which milking facility they were going to go with.
Three years later, the Beckmans took a second look at the robots. Soon after, that's what they decided on for their new facility.
"For us it was robots," Gary said. "It looked like the future for dairy farms our size. We wanted free time, and finding hired help was an issue."