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Nutrition has great effect on healthy development of calves

09 May 20224 min reading

Healthy and balanced nutrition of calves is critical for their growth and development. If a calf that has been fed healthily since its birth becomes an adult cow, its milk and reproductive efficiency increase greatly. Trouw Nutrition Turkey Ruminant Farm Channel Technical Manager Murat Baykan shares the points to be considered in calf feeding and draws attention to the importance of calf food and feed fortified with adequate vitamin and mineral support.

In the first months of a calf coming into the world, the metabolic programming of the cow plays a vital role in its lifespan and performance. When a calf that is fed a healthy and balanced diet starting from its birth becomes an adult cow, milk and reproductive efficiency increase to a great extent. The world's animal nutrition expert, Trouw Nutrition, contributes to the breeding of strong animals of the future by perfectly meeting the nutritional needs of calves with the products it has launched.

COW MILK FAILS TO MEET NUTRITIONAL NEEDS OF CALVES

Trouw Nutrition Turkey Ruminant Farm Channel Technical Manager Murat Baykan said that calf foods enriched with vitamins and minerals provide a solid foundation for the development of animals and shared important information about Sprayfo and Milkivit Calf Foods: “Newborn calves cannot fully meet the nutrients they need from cow's milk which is given in insufficient amounts. This makes it necessary to supplement the calves with an enriched calf food after two to four days of colostrum. On the basis of Sprayfo and Milkivit Calf Foods, which we have launced within the scope of our LifeStart concept, there are scientific studies proving that animals raised with an accurate and intense feeding program in the early stages of their lives show superior performance in the later stages. While a calf fed with Sprayfo and Milkivit shows a much healthier development than a calf raised by traditional methods, it continues its life as a strong and healthy cow that calves early and provides high milk production in the future.” he said.

CALF FEED MUST BE RICH IN ENERGY AND PROTEIN

Murat Baykan states that calf feeds, which play a major role in the healthy development of calves, should not be too thinned and should be rich in energy and protein. “Feeds given to calves from the first week to the 6th month significantly affect the development of the rumen and papillae, the formation of the microbial population and the body weight gain. In this context, the calf feed GoldenCalf, which we have launched, supports the development of the rumen, strengthens the immune system and helps the tissue and organ development of the calves. In addition to all these contributions, GoldenCalf increases the performance of calves and supports their productivity. It provides a high increase in body weight and improves intestinal health, increasing nutrient absorption.” he said. 

COLOSTRUM SHOULD NOT BE OVERLOOKED

Baykan says that for a healthy start in life, calves need to be fed with plenty of high quality colostrum and gain immunity, and goes on as follows: “Colostrum, contributes to the discharge of meconium accumulated in the intestines of the calves in the first days of their lives. It also contains hormones, growth factors and vital components necessary to develop a healthy intestinal tract. For this reason, calves should be fed with colostrum of at least 15 percent of their birth weight by applying two to three feedings within the first 12 hours after birth. For example, a 40-kilogram-calf should consume a minimum of 6 liters of colostrum within the first 12 hours after birth, and the colostrum should be at a body temperature of 37-39 Centigrade degrees. This temperature allows the calf to maintain its body temperature and it also supports the digestive system. At Trouw Nutrition, we are developing products that enrich the quality of colostrum in the global market. These products are used to replace farm colostrum when it is not available at all or to supplement it when its quality is insufficient. We are aiming to offer our colostrum products to the Turkish market in the near future.” 

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