“Ida is the extra set of eyes I needed”

October 27, 2022
Related features

When award-winning dairy farmer Dennis Smit from Ursem, North Holland, damaged his ankle while ice-skating, he didn’t have as much mobility as before, and needed help on his 90-cow farm.

Smit had no help on his farm at the time and knew that he needed to switch from his old heat detection system to something more sophisticated. He considered a few cow monitoring options, but eventually decided to hire Ida as he liked her features and the fact that his subscription included updates, hardware and ongoing customer service.

“Ida offered everything,” said Smit. “She’s an essential extra set of eyes for me in the barn. She has been a great help for me, especially when I haven’t been able to walk around a lot because of my damaged ankle”.

“The customer care has been excellent, and it was easy to set up the system and learn how to use the Ida app and understand the data. Whenever I have an issue or question about the system, the team is very responsive, and everyone is eager to help."

While Smit is very hands-on and keeps a close eye on his herd, Ida has also given him some more “freedom” and peace of mind. “When I’m on holiday, I can see on the app when a cow is on heat, and notify my brother, who is looking after the farm. I can relax more, knowing what’s happening when I’m not there, like when a cow is on heat or is showing early signs of sickness”.

The 47-year-farm, which was started by Smit’s father in 1975, is home to good-looking, award-winning cows with high lifetime milk production. Smit likes “beautiful cows with high production”, and the wall in his living room is testament to this, displaying numerous lifetime milk production awards. Aside from ensuring that his cows are healthy, fertile and producing large volumes of milk, Smit is also committed to the environment and in 2020, he won the Gouden Grutto Pul for his meadow bird management. The prize is awarded annually to a farmer who is committed to sustainable nature management and who makes a positive contribution to the environment.

With Ida’s help, Smit is achieving all his production and sustainability goals, and we expect he will soon need more wall space for all his awards.