Feed helps to boost calf immunity and growth

09 May 2019

A calf feed that incorporates a supplement to help support immune function in young stock has been launched by Mole Valley Farmers.

Ambition contains patented feed supplement OmniGen-AF, which is proven to promote natural immune function when calves face stress events, leading to fewer health issues and reduced medicine use.

Growth rates

US-based trials showed that Holstein bull calves, which were fed the supplement for the first 20 weeks of life, required less veterinary medicine intervention and this led to a 43% reduction in medicine costs.

Additional research found that calves fed the supplement from birth to four months of age, also transitioned better at weaning and this resulted in reduced growth checks and a 12.5% improvement in growth rates.

Crucial time

The 18% protein calf nuts and pellets are designed to complement the company’s milk replacer, which also includes the feed supplement.

“It makes sense to feed the supplement to young stock and to help bolster their immunity at what is a crucial and often difficult time,” says the company’s Chris Bartram.

Immune function

“Even well-managed calves will be exposed to stresses, such as weaning, de-horning or fluctuations in environmental temperatures,” he explains.

“Stress leads to the release of stress hormones, like cortisol, that can impair natural immune function, increasing the likelihood of health problems and suppressed growth rates.”