You may have seen the photos flying around social media of cows wearing VR headsets. And no they’re not actually fake. These Russian farmers have been putting VR headsets on their cows. Apparently, it can lead to a much higher yield of milk and more money for the farmers. Of course, commenters quickly asserted that this was the world entering the mootrix. However, actually, it’s a legitimate experiment taking place in Russia.
Scientists are working with farmers to reduce anxiety levels and stress in cows. It is known that a relaxed cow will produce more milk. So this is no marketing stunt, it’s a genuine scientific trial. The Ministry of Agriculture and Food of Moscow even issued a press release about the matter. The report states that special adapted VR goggles are being used on the cow’s head. The idea is to trick the cow into thinking it’s always in an enjoyable environment.
It’s a growing movement in farming techniques to focus on the animal’s emotional well being. This means bringing along the quality of life improvements that make them feel happier. Other techniques find farmers using scrubbing brushes or playing constant relaxing music. Scientists are claiming the first results with the VR headsets show that cows are much more relaxed. And when the herd is feeling happier, then it helps increase the milk production overall.
However, other researchers believe cows don’t have a vision like humans at all. So question the validity of this VR goggle cow farming study. Because cows only have a very limited binocular vision, meaning it’s not a clear cut case that they could even use virtual reality. But let’s be honest if we were always sitting in a summertime field then our mood would probably improve. As a result, it’s not really that far fetched, is it?
Other stories from farmers to improve their product include Wagyu beef farmers setting up mood lighting and massages. They’re adamant it leads to better beef tastes. And Missouri farmers have a long history of playing music to their cows, which they say will improve the taste of the milk.