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Cow’n’calf: Mother-bonded calf rearing in organic dairy herds

Project: Research

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When calves are separated from their mothers after only 24 hours, it results in a clear dilemma in organic milk production.
It is not in line with the organic principles, but has been an accepted practice through decades, especially for the sake of milk yield for human consumption. The dilemma has increasingly awakened the attention of consumers. The Organic RDD project KALVvedKO examines various aspects of the dilemmas regarding weaning, as well as the pros and cons by letting the calves stay together with their mothers during the milk feeding period. KALVvedKo seeks to solve the dilemmas through research and development of new robust and innovative housing systems for Danish production.
The project wants to achieve knowledge on careful separation, housing arrangements and health promoting care, which will make the cow-calf-togetherness possible throughout the milk feeding period in a secure and sustainable manner for both cows, calves and humans – and with the highest possible yield in the form of healthy animals, high product quality of both meat and milk, as well as good economy and trustworthiness in relation to the organic principles. Simultaneously, the project will create a foundation for taking informed choices whether such systems would be a solution for milk producers.
The project is financed by GUDP, Aarhus University, Thise Mejeri, Naturmælk, Tru-test and Økokologisk Landsforening.
Effective start/end date01/01/201931/12/2022

    Research areas

  • cow-calf systems, dairy cattle, health, welfare, gentle separation, management, care

Research outputs

ID: 168319414