Getting transition and early lactation cows off to the best start requires close attention to detail and a new fatty supplement from UFAC has been formulated to meet their specific nutritional requirements.

“We expect a transition cow to achieve an enormous amount in a very short time. They have got to safely deliver a calf and recover from the stresses this entails," said Mike Chown from UFAC.

"We then expect them to start eating significantly more, go from zero milk production to producing a significant volume of milk with good solids all within a short time frame. We ask them to do all of this without suffering any metabolic disorders along the way.

“Utopia is a unique supplement combining glycerine, fatty acids, amino acids and minerals to help improve health, productivity and fertility in transition and high yielding cows, focusing on four key areas.”

He said early lactation cows have a high demand for glucose which accounts for 70% of their energy needs. Glucose drives milk production but is also vital as the fuel for the immune system in the event of a disease challenge. Utopia contains rumen-inert glycerine, the most efficient source for glucose production by the liver.

A balanced blend of highly digestible rumen inert fatty acids boosts energy density and help reduce body condition loss, while choline helps keep the liver healthy and efficient to reduce the risk of ketosis.

The ability to fight infections quickly and efficiently during transition is vital so the new supplement contains high levels of vitamin E and organic selenium to help reduce oxidative stress and the risk of infection.

According to UFAC, the inclusion of the long chain Omega 3’s, EPA and DHA from the most effective marine sources helps strengthen the overall immune response and plays a crucial role in fertility, increasing the size and quality of eggs, leading to improved conception rates and reduced early embryonic deaths.

“Transition cows need a supply of essential amino acids and the performance of everything is determined by the first amino acid to be limiting. If any amino acid is limiting the consequence is yield depression, reduced milk protein and compromised fertility. In most transition diets this is methionine so Utopia supplies it in a highly effective rumen-inert form," concluded Mr Chown.