Balanced diet is key to ensure animal health. Beta carotene intake can be introduced into the cows’ diet to improve pregnancy rate and reduce metritis incidence.

In collaboration with DSM

Why does it matter?

Beta carotene is an essential nutrient found only in plants and cannot be synthetised by livestock. Therefore, it needs to be integrated into their diet. Beta carotene can be beneficial for increasing the pregnancy rate and reducing metritis incidence in dairy cows during the lactation period.

How did we solve this?

The beta carotene intake depends on the group of cow (pre and post-partum) and it can be tested in blood with I-check at farm level. In this project, 500 mg of beta carotene has been supplemented 4 weeks before calving and adjusted based on the lactation stage of the cows.

Integrating beta carotene shows good results on cow longevity, milk production and farm profitability. Thanks to the beta carotene supplements in the farm, the conception rate increased by 14,7% and the pregnancy rate increased by 4,2%. After two weeks of commencing supplementation in the diet, the beta carotene blood level increased from 2 to 3 (µg/mL). Finally, the placenta retention was 13,5% lower 24h post-partum.

Opportunities for other farms?

Supplementation of beta carotene is relevant for farms facing fertility or longevity issues. This approach helps achieve good results on cow longevity improvement, lifetime production and farm profitability. This solution should be combined with other actions to improve cow health and welfare. 

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