January 31, 2012 11:53 ET

Automated Feeders and Celmanax® Help Dairy Calves Fight Off Winter Challenges

MASON CITY, IA--(Marketwire - Jan 31, 2012) - Dairy calves face many environmental and nutritional challenges in winter as they struggle to stay warm. Add a pathogen challenge and calves can easily develop clinical scours or pneumonia. Combining the proven technologies of Celmanax® with automated calf feeding is helping dairies around the world meet these challenges.

Vi-COR®, the manufacturer of Celmanax and other specialized yeast culture products for livestock, is working with many dairies who are adopting the use of automated calf feeders. This technology not only allows precise delivery and measurement of milk replacers, but with the addition of either liquid or dry medicator units, it becomes even easier to add products such as Celmanax Liquid or Celmanax SCP to help calves fight off disease-causing pathogens.

Charlie Elrod, Ph.D. and Dairy Division Manager at Vi-COR explains that no dairy can provide a sterile environment for their calves. "There will always be some level of exposure to pathogens such as E. coli, Salmonella or Cryptosporidium," says Elrod. "With the consistent, twice-daily delivery of yeast culture, mannan oligosaccharide (MOS) and beta glucans in Celmanax, the pathogenic challenges to the calf's gut are significantly reduced."

Data from several in vitro research studies show a reduction in free pathogen cells (non-agglutinated) or the reduction in pathogen attachment to cultured intestinal cells when Celmanax is present. Celmanax significantly reduces the pathogens' ability to bind to and infiltrate the cells of the intestine, keeping calves healthier and growing.

According to Dr. Mike Van Amburgh, a calf researcher at Cornell University, automated calf feeding does not absolve the manager of responsibility for taking care of the other aspects of calf management. Best practices, such as calving pen cleanliness, timely colostrum feeding, adequate housing and a sound vaccination program will all help the calf to grow at the rates allowed by her genetic potential and good nutrition.

Vi-COR (Varied Industries Corporation), established in 1963 in Mason City, Iowa, manufactures yeast fermentation products for dairy, beef, poultry and swine feeds. The company provides research-proven feed products, expert nutritional knowledge and helpful advice for livestock nutritionists and producers. For more information about Vi-COR research studies, visit

Contact Information

  • Contact:
    Scott Appleget
    J.W. Morton & Associates