The gradual shift from manual milking to mechanized milking solutions in small and medium-sized farms and encountering global warming and other environmental concerns with automation are key opportunities for the adoption of milking automation solutions in developing countries. Moreover, increasing investments toward the development of milking automation are expected to provide growth opportunities for market players.
Milking automation is the process in which a number of hardware electronic devices are installed in the milking parlour to reduce dependency on manual labor for milking operations. These hardware devices are deployed on dairy farms with the integration of software for reducing labor costs and enhancing the quality and yield of milk. Milking automation includes hardware components such as milk meters, milking clusters, pulsators, milk analyzers, and milk point controllers, among others. It also comprises software and services to facilitate milking automation in the dairy farm by integrating with electronic hardware components.
The hardware segment held the largest market share in 2021. Growing preference for automated hardware and systems, technological advancements by key players to introduce innovative products, growing demand for dairy products, and the subsequent increase in the number of dairy cows globally are a few of the major factors driving the demand for milking automation hardware equipment. Moreover, the increasing awareness about remote health monitoring of dairy cows, identification and tracking of dairy cows with the help of sensor technology, and behaviour monitoring and control of livestock on dairy farms are expected to fuel the demand during the forecast period.
The small farm segment held the largest market share in 2021. Dairy farms in most regions of the world have an average herd size of fewer than 100 cows per farm. The adoption of milking automation solutions in dairy farms with a herd size of 50–100 increases farm productivity and profitability with a higher return on investment. The rapidly growing global population has led to a surge in demand for milk and other dairy products. To meet this growing demand, there has been a significant increase in the herd size of dairy farms globally, especially farms with a herd size of less than 100. In the near future, this is expected to provide ample opportunities for the adoption of milking automation solutions in small farms to improve milk yield and farm profitability.
The dairy cattle segment held the largest market share in 2021. Dairy cattle account for the largest share of the world’s milk production. The major factor dominating of the dairy cattle segment in the milking automation market includes ease of milking, large udder size, the ability to store milk for a longer duration, and high milk yield of dairy cattle are major reasons for larger market share. Milking animals such as goats and sheep account for only a little share of the market. High milk yield and efficiency compared with other milking animals along with better return on investment of dairy cattle farms as compared to small ruminant farms are some of the other factors propelling the market growth.
The milking automation market in Asia Pacific is expected to register the highest CAGR during the forecast period. Growing awareness among farm owners regarding the benefits of adopting milking automation is a major factor driving the market growth in Asia Pacific. The rapidly increasing population and the subsequent rise in demand for milk and dairy products have significantly increased livestock-rearing operations in the region, thereby driving market growth. Moreover, rapid urbanization and economic growth in countries such as China and India are also expected to lead to a surge in demand for milking automation solutions to meet the increasing demand for milk and other dairy products. Also, countries such as Australia and New Zealand have dairy farms with an average herd size of more than 500.
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