Many of the herd owners I work with have made a commitment to consistently produce milk with SCC less than 100,000. That commitment carries through to what they do in the barn, how they handle their cows, how they feed their herd and what they do in the parlor. It is a commitment of care for the cows and a commitment of quality for the consumer.
Cows not infected will naturally have a SCC less than 100,000. We want cows to be healthy and achieve optimum production. When cows have a SCC less than 100,000, they are no more prone to clinical mastitis than cows with higher cell counts. We need to use the tools available to prevent and control mastitis.
Why do some herds achieve a SCC less than 100,000 and many do not? Is it they can’t lower SCC because of where they farm or their facilities? Is it because of a lack of knowledge? It is because of a lack of tools? I’d like to suggest the primary difference is a lack of commitment. Those who put a priority on milk quality will achieve it. Why don’t you make lower SCC your goal and commitment this year?