New research from the University of Arizona shows that the volume of colostrum fed at birth impacts future milk production.

Brown Swiss calves fed 4.2 quarts of colostrum at birth produced about 2 pounds more milk per day during their first two lactations than calves fed 2.1 quarts of colostrum at birth. At $13 per hundredweight, that equates to about $160 in additional income over the two lactations, the study’s authors say.

The calves fed 4.2 quarts of colostrum also had lower veterinary cost and greater average daily gain. Study results, summarized in the table below, appeared in the October 2005 issue of The Professional Animal Scientist.