The SmartDairyFarming 1.0 programme was set in motion in 2013 on the initiative of companies, knowledge institutes and dairy farmers, with a contribution from the Mesdag Foundation. The common goal was developing innovation ways of extending the longevity of cows.

During the initial phase of the (SDF 1) SDF farming applications were tested at seven dairy farms. The data collected in this way was utilised to develop models for youngstock breeding, fertility and the transition period.

Following onto the positive experiences and preliminary research in SDF 1.0, the programme was continued as SDF 2.0. Twenty sensors used on a total of 2000 cows collected real time data that could be directly processed in the models in the data hub. This information was then used to provide farmers with individual herd management advice.  The initial experiences using the collected data in youngstock breeding, fertility and transition period models were positive. The needs of individual cow can be focussed on and animal health, fertility and targeted nutrition improved.

In 2015 saw the enrichment of the SDF 2.0 programme, to clarify the added value that could actually be realised on dairy farms. In September 2015, Agrifirm, FrieslandCampina and CRV joined forces in the SmartDairyFarming Foundation and a new programme plan was developed.