Lean on our Farm
Follow our farm's lean journey, see what we are doing, and learn about how lean thinking and tools can help your farming business. Lean can help every type of farmer and grower. We have started our 2 Minute LeanFarm videos to give farmers a practical sense of some of the lean tools and principles and how to apply them. These are done randomly based on what we are doing on our farm. Watch our videos or read our blog posts below to learn more.
Our farm equipment: reliability, capacity & effectiveness
Reliability, capacity and our farm equipment effectiveness When I first came to farming 10 years ago from manufacturing environments where reliability and OEE are inherent measures and critical to good operational performance, I was astounded that this was not really considered at all. So what is this key metric? OEE stands for overall equipment effectiveness […]
Cost Cost Cost
Cost Cost Cost With milk prices unpredictable, inflation and interest rates going up and up in this part of the world, and all input costs increasing constantly, managing cost within your farm business well is absolutely crucial. Any waste allowed in your business is just adding to more cost. We did a quick analysis of […]
The importance of a well organised workplace….. 5S it!
An example of a farm that is not Lean…. Check this photo out of a farm I drove past last year……. what is your impression of this farm business? Does your farm look like this? Last week I had the opportunity to run some workshops with sheep and beef farmers on the South Island and […]
Streamlining our calf feeding process to reduce time and motion
We are almost at the end of calving now (yes was suppose to post this a while back!) but this season we made some big changes in our journey to streamline our calving process and make it easier each year. Like many old farms, ours has infrastructure all over the place and this makes creating […]
Smaller owner operated farm – is Lean relevant to me?
I regularly get asked whether lean is only suitable for larger farming businesses. The answer is absolutely not. It is just as useful for smaller farms. If you are an owner operator time is even more precious to you. It is even more important that you are as efficient and effective with your time as […]
Happy New Year – what will you do differently this year?
We don’t just want to survive the future, we want to thrive in it. Change is inevitable. Happy New Year! It is always exciting to start a new year and while there is still quite a bit of uncertainty in the air around the world, we need to start on the front foot. Everything […]
How we saved 1.5 hours a day in feeding calves
A lot of time and motion and waste During and after calving, a big part of our jobs is to feed all the calves. In this process there is a lot of motion on farm and also a lot of non value added work. Most farms have calves spread all over the farm in various […]
Is everything in your head?
We love keeping info in our heads but its bad Farmers are very good at keeping a lot of information inside their heads. But this is not healthy for them or helpful to their team if they work with others. It is also not an effective way of operating a business. Can’t take time off […]
Calf rearing – creating a clear, simple, visual process that everyone understands
Complex processes There are lots of elements to rearing calves. Health, feeding, cleanliness and hygiene, weight management, pen maintenance, calf flow from pens to paddocks. While we have one dedicated role each season that is responsible for this to create good consistency, accountability and results (with a second fill in for the 2 days off), […]
Making calving season easier and less stressful
Be better organised With calving starting in the Southern Hemisphere this week, it becomes busier for farmers. It is important to be well organised, for the team to know exactly what they are responsible for, when tasks need to be complete and that critical path tasks are synchronised correctly between people. Eliminate chaos and inefficiency […]
The fantastic Fishbone to solve a farm problem
Fantastic Fishbone diagram – a lean tool We did our PD testing a couple of weeks ago and our empty rates this season were well above our target of 7% despite having an amazing season, lots of feed, great above average weights, excellent production, good results for our submissions etc. So it was very […]
Time/ Work life balance a challenge on your farm?
Poor work/ life balance? 38% of UK farmers that attended my recent webinar on lean for dairy farming, said that their biggest challenge at the moment is time/ work life balance. Farmers that I have worked with in New Zealand, Australia, Ireland and other countries also share this challenge. Is this you too? If yes, […]