Research was conducted by Dr. Merle Kuennen, DMV in the winter of 2002-2003
To find organic methods for treating disease in dairy, beef, and other commercial livestock enterprises that are registered as organic commercial producers. These producers have a need for effective treatment protocols in which traditional antibiotics, parasiticides, and other conventional methods of treatment cannot be used.
Somatic cell count (SCC) is the total number of cells per milliliter in milk. Primarily, SCC is composed of leukocytes, or white blood cells, that are produced by the cow’s immune system to fight an inflammation in the mammary gland, or mastitis. Since leukocytes in the udder increase as the inflammation worsens, SCC provides an indication of the degree of mastitis in an individual cow or in the herd if bulk tank milk is monitored. The overall goal of the pilot research was to determine if the somatic cell count could be reduced by using the experimental Vital Force™ Teat Dip. One herd from Iowa was selected, under winter field conditions.
A traditional dairy producer interested in moving towards organic milk production was selected. Before initiating the protocol, the somatic cell count was evaluated and recorded. The protocol was simple: to add the Vital Force™ Teat Dip formula to the regular teat dip and follow all other procedures as usual. The same cohorts of cows would receive the dip throughout a three-month period. The group was being scored once monthly for somatic cell counts.
Conclusions The conclusion was that the Vital Force™ Teat Dip demonstrated an ability to make a dramatic change in the somatic cell count, reducing it by more than 50%. The beginning somatic cell count ranged from 160,000 to 140,000. At the end of three months the counts were at 60,000. It should be noted that no adverse reactions were observed. These are impressive results. Further research is required to determine the role the Vital Force™ Teat Dip as well as other products could play not only in reducing the somatic cell count, but assisting in the reduction of teat end lesions and clinical mastitis cases, and having a positive impact on milk production. If the Vital Force™ Teat Dip and other formulas from Vital Force™ were found to be truly efficacious this would be a real benefit to the organic producer. Furthermore it is probable that this type of therapy may also be very beneficial as an adjunct to conventional treatment protocols for conventional herds.
1 Pennington, Jodie A., FSA4002-PD-3-06R University of Arkansas, United States Department of Agriculture, and County Governments Cooperating