Purina Animal Nutrition and Land O’ Lakes welcomed more than 475 dairy producers, family members and industry representatives to the Kalahari Resort in Wisconsin Dells, Wis., earlier this year for the Leading Dairy Producer Conference. Now in its 12th year, it is one of the largest dairy producer conferences held annually in the Upper Midwest.

This year’s attendees represented 212 dairy farms and more than 145,000 cows. One of the most popular attractions at the meeting were two, 4-month-old Holstein calves -- one that had been raised on a conventional feeding program, the other that had been raised on a “full-potential” feeding program using Land O’Lakes Cow’s Match® ColdFront milk replacer, and  AMPLI-Calf® Starter and Grower feeds. Specifically, their feeding programs were:

Calf #1:

20-20 milk replacer, 1.25 lbs./day
16% protein calf starter/grower

Calf #2:

Cow’s Match® ColdFront, 2.5 lbs./day
AMPLI-Calf® Starter 22%
AMPLI-Calf® Grower 18%

At 4 months of age, the two animals posted the following growth results:

  Conventional Full Potential Advantage % Improvement
Weight gain 194 pounds 253 pounds 59 pounds 30.4
Height gain 8.75 in. 11.25 in. 2.5 in. 28.6
ADG, Birth to weaning 0.71 pounds 1.57 pounds 0.86 pounds 121

And, most telling was the visual comparison of size between the two animals. Calf #1 is on the right; calf #2 is on the left.