Better Together: MSD Animal Health hosts inaugural Dealer Event in Hamilton

In an aim to strengthen bonds and enhance support for farmers across New Zealand, MSD Animal Health recently hosted its first dealer event in Hamilton this February. Animal Health offers a wide range of technology solutions for farmers, including the market leading behaviour monitoring cow collar, SenseHub® Dairy, previously known at Allflex® collars, Intelligate® and Protrack® drafting gates, milk sensors and milking control, as well as Allflex identification tags, Coopers® drench, vaccines and pharmaceutical products.

With 15 dealers in attendance, represented by 31 of their key personnel, the theme for the event was “Better Together”, which for MSD Animal Health exemplifies how the partnership between the company and dealers is better for farmers, local communities, local businesses, and them.

The authorised dealers’ group is a new network that has been created in the last 12 months. The event served as an opportunity to educate dealers particularly surrounding MSD Animal Health’s current and upcoming technology solutions, processes, and ways of working.

Speaking about the inaugural event, Pauline Calvert, Livestock Business Unit Manager at MSD Animal Health New Zealand, described it as a resounding success.

“Our first Dealer Event was a great opportunity to reinforce the invaluable role of the dealer network in driving agricultural advancement. We were really pleased to receive positive feedback on the event, with attendees confirming that they felt like valued partners and that they’re excited for our future of working partnership.”

Updates were also provided regarding dealer support mechanisms, portfolio expansion, and future prospects.

Benefits to Farmers

One of the key highlights discussed during the event was the significant benefits offered to farmers through the extensive dealer network.

With 20 dealers comprising more than 150 dedicated individuals on the ground, alongside the MSD Animal Health team, farmers gain access to unparalleled training and support. These 20 dealers, carefully selected nationwide for their technical expertise, relationships, and standing within the rural sector, also embody health and safety ethos at MSD Animal Health.

This comprehensive assistance addresses critical factors driving technology adoption on farms, with support ranking as a significant driver and lack of support identified as a barrier to adoption. The familiarity and trust established between farmers and dealers, who often serve as the primary local points of contact, further enhance the effectiveness of the network.

“Dealers assist with installation, training, repairs, and maintenance of technology solutions on dairy farms,” confirms Pauline.  “Given the bespoke nature of MSD Animal Health’s technology, with each dairy shed requiring tailored setup and installation, their expertise is invaluable.”

Offering 7-day after-hours support, dealers ensure timely assistance for repairs and maintenance, leveraging their proximity to farms and stocking critical service parts and spares, thereby minimising downtime and maximising operational efficiency for MSD Animal Health’s valued customers.

Event Highlights

The event agenda encompassed a diverse range of topics, including an overview of MSD Animal Health’s global and local presence, and the role of the New Zealand team.

Presentations explained the evolution of the company, its trajectory, and why farmers opt for MSD Animal Health’s solutions. Demonstrations of the SenseHub Dairy software and app provided attendees with firsthand insights into its functionality.

Key discussions also revolved around the product portfolio, highlighting existing offerings and upcoming additions. The significance of the dealer network, its evolving role, and the comprehensive after-sales support mechanisms were also underscored.

Participants also had the opportunity to gain practical insights through visits to a pilot farm in Te Rapa. These visits provided firsthand exposure to ongoing trials, product demonstrations, and interactions with industry experts.

A Roadmap for the Future

As the event came to a close, attention shifted towards the future roadmap of SenseHub solutions from now until 2026.

“MSD Animal Health’s dealer event not only succeeded in fostering better relationships through working together but also laid a solid foundation for continued progress within the agricultural community,” said Pauline.