The powers of classical music have long been appreciated by many people from all walks of life – and for many different reasons. Some of you just love to listen to the beautiful strains of Rachmaninov and the like, quite a lot of you play it to your babies to make them geniuses and there are a few – not sure how many, mind – that believe it can help your tomatoes grow.
Well, you can now add farmers to the list of those who believe that music is much, much more than just notes on a page. According to a new survey RSPCA Freedom Food, 77 per cent of farmers either play music, have the radio on, chat or sing to their livestock to keep them calm, cool and collected.
Radio 2 has emerged as the most popular station, played by 23 per cent of those asked, with ten per cent admitting they themselves sing to their flocks and herds, including opera, hymns, songs from the 60s and 70s and – rather bizarrely – the soundtrack to the film Born Free, although no mention was made of Old Macdonald Had a Farm. Some of the most popular bands were Aerosmith, Nirvana, Bon Jovi, Coldplay and Eminem.
“Put simply, a stressed and unhappy cow won’t drop her milk but we never have that problem with our girls. The secret to their happiness and good production is not only giving them the best care we can, under the RSPCA’s Freedom Food scheme, but tuning into the local radio or Planet Rock at milking time. The cows love a bit of Aerosmith and the Rolling Stones. It makes them chilled out and relaxed and that’s what produces great milk,” Freedom Food farmer David Tory said.
It’s certainly moo-sic to our ears, at any rate!
What would you play to your cows if you had a herd of your own?