Sunday, November 1, 2009

An Udder Transformation

During the time of the Mine the fields at the far end of town were home to the Havelock Mine Golf Club. These days the 15 hectares of fairways have been plowed and replanted, the trees have been cut down, and the clubhouse gutted and renovated – all of it now home to Bulembu Dairy. 

Renovations on the old Club House began in March 2009 and by the end of August 25 cows had taken to pasture. Headed up by Dairy Manager Colin Lovely, the cows are milked twice a day at 6:00 am and 3:00 pm and produce approximately 330 liters of milk each day.

The milk goes directly into bulk cooling tanks where it is cooled to 4 degrees Celsius and then processed into emasi (sour milk that is popular in Swaziland) or as fresh milk. Since the herd is TB and Brucellosis free and the dairy runs a very hygienic process the milk is left unpasteurized.

Currently the milk is being sold for 7R/liter in Bulembu and is also sold in Pigg’s Peak for a similar price. Any excess milk is sold to Parmalat, a dairy processing company in Swaziland.

The dairy’s future is bright. With a goal of having 45 cows at pasture by the middle of 2010 Lovely hopes to have close to 200 cows in 2020 to coincide with the 2,000 orphans that will be living in Bulembu.

Let’s do the math: 200 cows x 6.6 liters of milk per cow per milking x 2 milkings per day = 2,640 liters of milk produced each day. Got milk? We sure do!


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