Why Japan's Hot Cows Are Wearing Cool Shirts

High-tech shirts fight annual summertime drop in milk production
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 1, 2017 2:36 PM CDT
Japan's Cows Get High-Tech Shirt to Beat the Heat
Stock image   (Getty Images/Sjo)

Cows in Japan are sporting some new duds for the summer: high-tech shirts to keep them cool. The Japan Times reports milk production typically drops 10% during the summer heat, and farmers worry that will only get worse with climate change. That led Japanese apparel company Gunze to create the Ushi-ble. It's a shirt made of the same "feel-cool" fabric used in sportswear that covers the cow's neck and shoulders. If a sensor in the shirt detects it's too dry, a tube soaks it with water, which evaporates and cools the cow. Gunze says the Ushi-ble has shown it can reduce the summer drop in milk production and may also keep cows' fertility rates from falling in the heat. CNET highlights some new high-tech human clothing, including a warming shirt and massaging jacket. (More cows stories.)

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