Ruminants Swine

LifeStart is a science-based program that focuses on the critical first months of a dairy calf’s life

In the future, to feed the ever-increasing world population in a sustainable way, we need to utilise the full potential of each production animal. For dairy cows, this means increasing their performance per day of life. To increase the average lifetime daily production you need to:

Reduce the age at first calving
Increase the cow milk production per lactation
Increase the number of lactations per cow

LifeStart is a science-based platform for dairy calves that deals with the critical first months of a dairy calf’s life. LifeStart research has shown that metabolic programming during the first weeks of life has a big impact on organ development, leading to a more robust cow with an increased performance later in life.

Most of the scientific information related to the LifeStart platform can be related to a certain age window of a dairy calf or heifer. This information can be found under one of the 6 blue tabs above. However, some other LifeStart science cannot be clearly related to a particular age window. This information has been grouped under one of the 4 green buttons below.


Metabolic programming

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Glucose metabolism

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Role of fat in calf nutrition

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Lactobalance, osmoregulation and hydration

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The benefits of following LifeStart calf feeding schedules.

Trouw Nutrition has carried out research comparing LifeStart calf feeding schedules with elevated planes of nutrition to more traditional calf feeding schedules. Trials show that by applying LifeStart scientific principles and feeding schedules during the first 70 days of a dairy calf’s life, calf nutrition improves and farmers benefit from:

Higher average
daily weight gain

Earlier breeding

Better udder development

Higher milk production

A lower culling rate
during the first lactation

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Trouw Nutrition is dedicated to optimize calf rearing principles by developing science based solutions that will enable dairy farmers to produce in a more sustainable way. Together with our global network of scientific institutes, we share solutions to deal with common challenges of the dairy industry.

In 2014 Trouw Nutrition initiated the Kempenshof LifeStart trial in which calves are monitored from birth until the end of their productive life. This trial still continues today.

Our team will share their latest findings and results as well as other important information related to calf rearing from around the world.

LifeStart UPDATES brings you...

  • The latest Kempenshof trial results 6 months prior to official publish
  • Science translated into practical appliances
  • Important industry insights
  • And a complete overview of upcoming congresses and events

Transforming research and development into practical nutritional solutions

Science is a key driver in supporting our customers to be able to run a more cost-effective and sustainable livestock farming business. We translate new scientific insights into practical nutritional solutions as fast as possible. These solutions are centered around problem areas that farmers have to deal with on a daily basis.

We have 6 global animal nutrition research centres that focus on ruminants, swine and poultry and a specific ingredient research centre that works across species. In-house research is complemented by more than 50 long-term research collaborations with leading universities, research institutes and other organisations. Innovations are tailored to match the needs of each species during each phase of an animal’s life.