26 Feb I Love Moo: Dating-Style App Plays Cupid for Lonely Cows
A group of innovative software developers have recently launched a new tinder-style dating app to help farmers find the best breeding prospects for their cattle.
Tudder, the brain child of UK farm technology start-up Hectare Agritech, allows farmers to scroll through the profiles of potential suitors, including essential information including breed, age, location and more.
Like the popular human dating app, Tinder, users express their interest in a particular animal by swiping right, which then directs the user to SellMyLivestock, an online market place where sheep, cattle and pigs are listed for sale. If the fit is right, the farmers can contact the buyer and make an offer.
According to Hectare Agritech Chief Executive Dough Bairner, an online dating platform lends itself perfectly to livestock matching.
“There’s so much genetic data sitting in the background behind breeding stock”, he said. “You can make a decision based on science rather than someone’s self proclaimed sense of humour.”
“We’ve had over 40,000 searches in the last 24 hours, so that equates to one in every three UK farmers putting a search into our app,” said Mr Bairner.
“The app takes it out of the hands of a subjective guess of whether you’re going to get on with somebody and puts it into the realm of genetic science, which can only be a good thing for rearing the right stock and having a successful farm business.”
International interest in the app has encouraged Hectare Agritech to consider launching in other countries, including Australia.
One Australian dairy farmer has expressed his interest in Tudder to help with genetic decision making.
“I think its hilarious and something you can have a bit of fun with. The people in the cow world, particularly the dairy industry, they love their cows and love showing cows,” said Adam Jenkins.
The Victorian farmer thinks that Tudder could be a tool he’d use in finding the right breeding stock for his enterprise.
“But on a serious side, it is matching cows across the continent, which could be pretty attractive – sitting down and having a bit of a swipe left or right.”
“I’d have to talk to Brownie and a few of the girls and see what they’re really wanting,” said Mr Jenkins.
“We’d have to look at what their genetics look like and how that fits in with our cross-bred system.”
Tudder is the newest addition in a recent wave of agricultural technologies, including a number of innovations aimed at the cattle and dairy markets. American start up Livestock Labs have been testing Embedivet– an embeddable chip in cattle, capable or monitoring animal health and location to enable more informed decision making.
Particularly in the dairy sector, the development of products like Tudder and Embedivet complement the move towards heavily automated milking parlours that have the capability to match nutrition to an individual cow’s nutritional and lactation requirements, improve milking times and reduce livestock stress.