Disclaimer: Before you go getting any ideas from Dr Rami Hamad, to add water misters above your work force’s desks, let’s be clear that his workers are dairy cows and they’re in Dubai – where it’s very, very hot.
Dr Rami Hamad is a dairy farmer in Dubai, and soaring temperatures and heat waves can pose serious problems for the farming industry. When it’s too hot, the cows don’t eat, and their milk production goes down – causing Hamad’s business to suffer.
As is the way, the simple solutions are also usually the most elegant and effective. So to remedy the problem, Hamad came up with an ingenious cow shower that uses inexpensive piping and misters to cool the cows on their walk between the housing unit and the milking station.
“We have 11 000 dairy cows on this farm so we had to come up with a solution that was simple and cost effective. Adding motion sensor showers in the tunnel between the housing and milking parlour cools the cows. As a result production over the last three years has pushed up production per cow per day from 22 litres to 30 litres. It also means production remains the same through summer and winter,” he explains.
He also pushed the height of the cow houses down from five meters – as is the standard across Dubai – to three meters, meaning the coolers are closer to the cows and generates a saving of $50 000 per cow house on the number of coolers, electricity and water needed.
Numbers don’t lie
The dairy market in Dubai is very large and highly competitive. However, since implementing the system, Hamad’s dairy owns a 34% share of the market and is one of the top five companies in the Middle East – land of big oil. Not bad going for a simple cow shower.