A NEW product which ensures that young calves are reared in both comfort and in an environmentally friendly way, is new to the market on the UK mainland.

The Calf Green Floor System, from ICE Comfort Slat Mat company, which is based near Dublin, in Ireland, is the result of extensive R and D to meet the ever increasing demands by both farmers and the animal welfare lobby to improve the welfare of calves housed on slats, pointed out the company’s managing director, Tony Dunne.

“It also addresses, for the first time by any rubber mat, the major issue of achieving reductions in the ammonia emissions from the slatted floors,” he said.

The Calf Floor System improves calves’ cleanliness, health and welfare by the unique curved shape of the mat, which significantly reduces lameness through its unique cored centre with a ‘super-soft’ dynamic interior.

This ensures calves are kept dry as the curved shape achieves the speedy removal of animal waste to the slurry tank below. “Wet floors or bedding leads to wet calves which also reduces the calves’ body temperature, which can in turn lead to pneumonia and Comfort Calf Floor System maintains an insulated and dry floor preventing this,” pointed out Mr Dunne.

“By improving drainage, it also improves air quality in the housing and a reduction in the ‘ammonia stench’ which can also lead to pneumonia in calves.”

The mat fits down over each individual slat and it will not come up after installation and the slat mat acts like a sleeve over the slat so there is less chance of the calf faeces sticking as it would to the concrete surface of the slat.