The research innovation (RI) “Scoring vitality in new born calves” was presented in France, Portugal, Estonia and Belgium. Furthermore, there was an international webinar held on this topic. In Belgium a demo fair was organised by the project KalFit. The fair focussed on dairy farmers. However, some beef farmers and mixed cattle farmers were present. During this demo fair, a booth from BovINE was installed and used to present the topic of the research innovation “Scoring vitality in newborn calves”. There was a brochure on calf vitality, what is important and how you can score this (APGAR score). The brochure (see below) is in general for calves, but with added extra information specific for beef calves.
The basis of this innovation is that farmers should have a closer look at the calf immediately after birth. However, in Belgium Blue White Belgians are giving birth via C-section, so farmers are already close by and can intervene quickly. Still, more attention can be paid to specific problems and it is important to know the key factors of a vital calf. Calf health is the start for having a productive cow! The ability to score the vitality in newborn calves gives farmers a tool to know when best to call a vet or when vitality is good for the calves.