Cows queue for milking robot
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The cows that queue up to milk themselves

Farmer Chris Bargh is one of the growing number of UK dairy farmers who use robotic milking machines, in which the cows queue up to milk themselves.

Cows on such farms are essentially free to walk into one of the milking robots' holding areas at any point of the day - except for the occasional queue.

Once inside, they're identified by their tags. If the cow's been milked too recently, an electronic gate leads it out. But if not, its udders are brushed and cleaned before a laser pinpoints exactly where to clamp the milk pumps, adjusting its grip to be as gentle as possible.

Bargh bought three robots six years ago, to milk the 180 cows on his farm in Blackburn.

In this clip, Bargh talks to presenter Gregg Wallace about his experience using them.

Chris Bargh's farm features in Inside the Factory: How Our Favourite Foods Are Made, which you can watch on BBC Two at 20:00 BST or find online shortly after

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  • 07 May 2015