Exploring the Effects of Precision Livestock Farming Notification Mechanisms on Canadian Dairy Farmers
Modern dairy farms are increasingly adopting technologies to monitor animal health and welfare and send notifications to farmers when issues arise. These precision livestock farming (PLF) technologies promise increased animal health and farm productivity. Yet, few studies exist on the effects of these technologies on those who use them. Studies from Europe show the 24/7 nature of potential PLF notifications can make farmers feel always “on call”, increas-ing their overall stress levels. An initial online survey of 18 Canadian dairy farmers was conducted to explore their experiences with PLF notifications. Reported benefits of PLF technologies include improved animal health and dairy products, labor benefits, and ease of data collection. The study also un-covered weaknesses of PLF notifications, including information uncertainty and overload, false alerts, inappropriate timing and communication mediums. Design recommendations are presented to improve PLF notification mecha-nisms.