Dairy farmers struggling against rising labour costs and falling milk prices are looking to Australia for inspiration on new dairy technology.

Two Argentinean milking equipment experts recently spent a week visiting dairy farms in Victoria to inspect more efficient shed designs and the latest milking systems, with a view to implementing more productive methods of dairy farming in Argentina.

The managing director of Argentinean milking equipment company Westfalia Landtechnik, Miguel Casares, commenting that the industry was similar in both countries and that both nations' farmers were suffering. In Australia, deregulation has devastated the incomes of many farmers.

"The trends are the same as here," said Casares: "The medium to small farmers are getting out, and the bigger ones are getting bigger and stronger."

Problems with falling milk prices are also affecting both countries, and mean that it is essential for farmers to find ways of milking more cows, with greater efficiency and less labour.

The main difference appears to be the use of rotary dairies, installed across Australia with successful platforms but unpopular when introduced to Argentina in the late 1970s. Casares explained that this was to do with technology: "The idea of this trip is to see what Australia is doing in platform design and to source better performing equipment."