Diet Digestibility and Growth of Holstein Calves Fed Acidified Milk Replacers Containing Soy Protein Concentrate


Three experiments were conducted to determine the effects of acidification of milk replacers containing soy protein concentrate on diet digestibility and growth of Holstein bull calves. In Experiment 1, six calves (6 wk old) were fed at 10% of BW/d either acidified milk replacer containing soy protein concentrate or untreated milk replacer containing soy protein concentrate. Replacers were reconstituted to 12.5% DM for 10-d adjustment and 4-d collection periods to determine digestibility and N balance. Digestibilities of DM, ether extract, and N were similar between treatments. Nitrogen retention and N retention as a percentage of that absorbed were higher for calves fed the acidified diet. In Experiment 2, 20 calves (1 wk old) were fed diets identical to those diets fed in Experiment 1 at 20% of BW/d for 4 wk. Calves were allowed to adjust to the diet for 5 d. Growth parameters were measured and amount of feed offered was adjusted weekly. Calves fed the untreated diet had higher daily weight gains, girth gains, height gains, and better feed utilization. In Experiment 3, 21 calves were fed either the aforementioned diets or a replacer based on milk proteins at 10% of BW/d (12.5% DM) for 4 wk. Growth parameters were measured and DM intakes were adjusted weekly. Growth and feed conversion were similar across diets. Replacers containing soy protein concentrate or large amounts of whey may need to be supplemented with additional methionine to maximize rate of gain.


Biological Sciences

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Journal of Dairy Science



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© 1989 American Dairy Science Association.