Reducing Energy Costs



Energy saving on dairy farms

Five short videos to help cut on-farm electricity costs

Smarter Energy: Victorian dairy farmers view simple ways to save energy

Dairy farmers are constantly under pressure from the cost of electricity and increased focus on carbon emissions. Electricity accounts for a significant proportion of a dairy farm’s shed costs.

This short series of videos helps identify real opportunities for Victorian dairy farmers to better control energy costs and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. WestVic Dairy, with the support of Sustainability Victoria and Dairy Australia, presents energy saving tips and technologies for reducing farm energy use in the dairy. Each videos focuses on improvements that are:

  • Relatively low cost
  • Have short payback periods
  • Implemented quickly in most dairies. 

Video #1 – Simple ways to save energy

Stuck for ideas about reducing electricity usage on-farm? LED lights are 4–5 times more efficient than high bay lighting. They produce less heat and are recyclable. Here are some low cost and no cost ways to save electricity. The video also looks at ensuring the best plan from an electricity provider.

Please take the quick survey here. Feedback helps us measure progress.


Video #2 – Water heating

For hygienic washing of dairy plant, it is essential to have water heated to 85°C or above. How can this be done cost effectively? Learn how in this short video, where energy assessor Anne McDowell discusses cost savings with preheating systems, heat pump solutions and solar hot water.

Please take the quick survey here. Feedback will help inform analysis of this project.


Video #3 – Milk cooling

Is cooling equipment running as it should? Did you know it’s much cheaper to cool milk through a plate cooler than a large compressor? This video covers all the tips and resources to get cooling equipment performing efficiently and discusses the pros and cons of cooling towers and electronic control valves.

Please take the quick survey here. Feedback will help inform analysis of this project.


Video #4 – Milk harvesting

Adding a variable speed drive to milk and vacuum pumps could reduce milk harvesting costs by 40% or more. Watch this video to find out if a variable speed pump will work with existing infrastructure.

Please take the quick survey here. Feedback will help inform analysis of this project.


Video #5 – Series summary: Energy use on Australian dairy farms

Is the farm team on-board with energy saving plans?

This video provides a summary of the whole series, making it a fast and effective tool for helping a farm team understand energy consumption both inside and outside the dairy. The video covers often ignored energy hot spots like stockwater, shed and lights, feeding, milk cooling and milk harvesting. Applying these changes can save a significant amount off the total energy bill.

Please take the quick survey here. Feedback will help inform analysis of this project.


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