C-Lock Technology is Changing the Cattle Industry, and 2020 Laid the Foundation for Growth
It has been an interesting year. C-Lock Inc. has taken aggressive measures that so far have effectively minimized most of the impacts of the pandemic. We have implemented strict screening, social distancing, ventilation, and contact tracing measures to eliminate “community spread” at work. To mitigate the effects of global travel restrictions, we have worked hard to develop short explanatory videos to guide clients in assembly, servicing, and data handling techniques, and we have added staff members to provide dedicated customer support. The pandemic has impacted the availability of parts. For example, it appears that the focus of our suppliers on the production of personal protective equipment like face masks, has impacted the availability of GreenFeed filters. We are working diligently to develop inventories of affected parts, supplies for the future, and measures to mitigate changes in component supplies.
In new developments, we have been busy and developed a smartphone application that can link GreenFeed monitoring and control directly to any smartphone through a Bluetooth connection. This Bluetooth application will allow customers to more easily communicate with the systems, with easier set-up and review of operational parameters while on site.
We are gratified that the global demand for our products has continued to increase. To accelerate our manufacturing capabilities to keep pace with the increased demand, we have purchased new equipment for metal cutting, processing, and finishing. We will soon install additional facilities for raw metal preparation in addition to new facilities for metal cutting, painting, and powder-coating. In addition, C-Lock has added additional staff in engineering, welding and fabrication, electronics, assembly, quality control, data processing, customer service and sales. As we head into 2021, we will have a staff of about forty skilled and dedicated workers to support continued product development, production, programming, and customer service efforts.
Research projects underway across the globe are increasing the demand for GreenFeed units. For example, Geno, is using our technology to support their efforts to breed low-emission cows. The Livestock Improvement Corporation of New Zealand (LIC)is also using GreenFeed in their efforts to develop lower methane emitting cattle. Teagasc in Ireland is also using GreenFeed units to conduct extensive research on projects to better understand and to reduce ruminant methane emissions. Also, during 2020 DSM used GreenFeeds to test the effectiveness of their new feed additive 3NOP to reduce methane emissions in production environments around the world. Our automated data analysis programs, extensive video instruction catalog, responsive customer support team and exclusive Global Standards Program ensure that GreenFeed measurements made at any time, by any research group, anywhere in the world, are securely archived and uniformly processed to produce results that are comparable across time and space around the world. GreenFeed has become the undisputed Gold Standard for measurements of methane, carbon dioxide, and optionally oxygen and hydrogen fluxes from ruminant animals under actual production conditions. The result is that more than 240 papers that utilize GreenFeed and SmartFeed have been published in the peer reviewed scientific literature and the publication of new papers continues to accelerate.
As a service to our customers our website maintains a periodically updated list of published papers that utilize GreenFeed technology, which you can find here.
In 2020 C-Lock initiated a monthly seminar series where colleagues present recent results of cutting-edge research utilizing C-Lock equipment. The seminars have been enthusiastically received by a global audience of several hundred colleagues. Spots for next year are filling up fast, but if you would like to take advantage of the opportunity to present your research to a broad audience, please contact us. For a list of presenters and access to their recorded video presentations please contact: Matt Bitz – firstname.lastname@example.org.
In the last year, C-Lock Inc. has introduced a new “Producer” line of intake monitoring and precision feeding equipment. The “Producer” models retain key features required in production environments in a lower-cost form-factor. For example, our SmartFeed Producer unit is lower cost because it uses a high-density linear polyethylene bin instead of a brushed stainless-steel bin. You can check out the specific details on the SmartFeed Producer unit here. We have also introduced producer versions of SmartFeed Pro (which monitors and controls feed delivery to individual animals) and Super SmartFeed (a mobile, self-contained unit to deliver precise amounts of a specific feed to individual animals).
Our SmartFeed units are in use in the US and several countries to monitor intake and animal efficiency in production environments. For example, Byergo Angus, a breeder in Missouri, USA uses SmartFeed and SmartScale technology to help identify a very special high-performing bull. In the next year, this bull’s semen will likely be used to improve Angus performance across America. In addition to using C-Lock Inc. technology for bull testing, our systems are also used to identify the most-efficient seed-stock cows to retain for herd-development.
One of the key goals of C-Lock Inc. is to utilize advanced technology and apply cutting-edge science to develop products that improve the efficiency and reduce the environmental footprint of animal agriculture. We sponsored a global proposal competition and awarded over $500,000 worth of C-Lock equipment to address key issues faced by animal agriculture. Of the over forty outstanding proposals that were submitted, a panel of internal and external experts selected eight for funding. Some of the equipment has been already delivered. During the next year, the remainder of the specified equipment will be distributed to the winners. A brief synopsis of the research planned by each of the winners will be available on our website in the coming months. Be sure to watch for the announcement of our next competition during 2021.
In 2020, C-Lock Inc. acquired a forty-acre pasture in the proximity of our manufacturing facility. The land will be used to establish a facility to house animals for new product development and field testing. The development of the capabilities of the research facility and initial testing of selected new products will begin during 2021.
We look forward to 2021 as vaccines allow us to have more interactions in person. We are confident that a global food supply will continue to require animal agriculture to become increasingly efficient and sustainable. We are eager to contribute our talents and expertise to this endeavor.
We wish you a safe and happy 2020 holiday season and a productive and fulfilling 2021!