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Farm Ernest Holstein


Important advantages

In April of 2018 Frederico Bellomi and his father installed a Sand Recovery System on their farm. It being the first installed in a dairy cow farm in Italy, though very common in Amerika. Soon after they notice a lot of important advantages, says Frederico at the Ernest Holstein breeding farm located in Verolavecchia, in Brescia.

Thanks to the characteristics of the sand the hide of the cows is in better condition, the cows are cleaner and the cows rest more. The new system reduces the amount of time spent per cow bed and the presence of flies and dust has also been greatly reduced. Frederico says: “I have recorded the zeroing of decubitus lesions on the hocks and the dangerous slips of the cows that now, walking more confidently and show better heat.” 

Benefits according to Frederico:

  • The cows are cleaner and in better condition
  • Less time spent per cow bed
  • Reduced presence of flies and dust
  • Zeroing of decubitus lesions on the hocks
  • Almost no dangerous slips of the cows, that now walk more confidently
  • The cows show better heat
  • Reduction of dermatitis and mastitis by 50%

bellomi image00029 1 cows

“That’s not all. The inter-digital foot dermatitis has decreased by 50% and the same percentage concerns the reduction of mastitis compared to the period in which I used straw for the beds. The somatic cell count has decreased, and the use of disinfectants has also been reduced.”

“Thanks to the Sand Recovery System, the use of which objectively leads to greater wear of the scrapers and a considerable consumption of the sole of the feet of the cows. The washing and recovery of the sand optimizes the work of the company, avoiding its dispersion on the ground.”

Collaboration with Mavasol 

When looking for a solution for sand recovery, Mavasol was suggested by a business connection. The sand recovery system of Mavasol seemed perfect for the job, but the language barrier offered some challenges at the start. Eventually they managed to find a translator and a deal was made. 


How does the new system work? 

After the scrapers moved the manure out of the stable, the flushing inside the collection channel conveys all the sewage. Then the mix of sand, manure and water goes into a first tank where, by a natural process, the sand filters to the bottom. The intervention of the ‘One Shot’ recovers the sand and washes it. At the same time the water released by the flushing overflows and flows into a flat lane called the ‘sand lane’. Where the same water slows down allowing the smallest fraction of the sand, that didn’t sink in the first tank, to settle. At this point the recovery process of all the sand is completed.

The obtained sewage flows into another tank where, by means of a separator, the fibrous part is removed and the remaining liquid ends up in another storage tank. This will be used for the initial flushing of the slurry collection channel.

There are therefore three elements obtained destined for as many different uses: 

  • The sand, which to ensure the best quality standards must have a variable size between 0 and 2 mm, is reserved for the beds of the cows.
  • The fibrous part is used to fertilize the land in place of chemical fertilizers. 
  • And the liquid fraction is conveyed into the appropriate tank to be used as flushing, any surplus is placed in another reserve storage tank.





“If we consider that the use of straw in beds required an annual cost of €70,000, in addition to a considerable amount of work and a series of management problems, the transition to sand has allowed to reduce by a third the cost.” Matteo points out. 

“It’s too early to provide definitive data, but I think that the amortization will take about 4 years. With Sand Recovery System” says Matteo “I believe we can really speak of a global approach to the concept of circular economy that today is a cornerstone of our business.” 

“Everything that the farm produces, in fact, is reused without waste in the name of environmental sustainability, with significant savings in time and money. The efficiency of the system allows you to recover 95% of the sand separated from the sewage. This seems to me a fact that speaks for itself and which, together with all the other aspects listed, demonstrates the validity of this choice.” Matteo concludes. 

You can find the Itallian article, a source for this article, here.

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