Holistic approach for nutrient management


Considering and optimizing the farm based on a holistic approach: change of barn construction – change of organic fertilizer specifics – improvement of soil-fertility – more vigorous plants – better fodder quality – improvement of animal welfare and performance.

Needed developments for the future: expanding agriculture neglects natural principles and required diversity; ecological benefits have to become more important and must be achievable without high costs; replacement of part of the slurry application by solid manure.

Change of nutrient management to improve environment quality

Different focus in breeding; change to: easy calving, high feed uptake; focus on high fodder quality (“clean silage”, containing a high diversity of plant species, high energy content in combination with structure)

Farm description


  • Soil types: Mainly moor and marshland
  • Climate: Temperate oceanic climate
  • Average Altitude: 1.2 m a.s.l.; no slope

Grassland management

  • Grazing: Rotational stocking, 6 months grazing period
  • Fertilization: Focus on solid manure; less slurry


  • Annual Work Unit: 2 (one fulltime, two part-time) plus one internship
  • Agricultural Area: 70 ha UAA
  • Breeds: HF; Red Holstein and Swedes Rot-bunt
  • 140 dairy cows

Animal performance

  • 7300 l /year/dairy animal; high protein content

Why it is working

Farmer questioned established procedures and was willing to change his farming system; aim: optimizing production within the farm, a certain amount of intuition for natural processes is also considered necessary.

Additional information

Farming system

conventional farming

Domains of innovation

farm system

Main types of animal

dairy cattle



Product type

Farmer portrait


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