Innovation born of frustration

Founded on the family farm, Milk Bar® is a classic story of innovation born out of necessity.
Through the 1970's and 1980's, Milk Bar founders Ross and Diane McInnes were having a frustrating time feeding their calves.
Farm frustration became innovation when they pioneered a whole new concept for feeding calves - user friendly, gravity feeders with a teat to control milk flow.

What started on the farm has grown into Milk Bar, a global company that specialises in the development of new ideas and products to help farmers and calves. We are still a family business, with an exceptional team of people around the world.

In 1989 when we developed the first gravity group feeders, we didn’t really understand the effects or importance of the humble calf teat. So, for the first year we used a commonly available teat which was used for tube feeders (feeders where the calves suckled milk up a tube like a straw). When calves were fed from the new gravity feeders, they drank a lot faster than those fed with the tube feeder, and, as a result the faster feeding calves had more nutritional scours and cross suckled after feeding.

So, the challenge was clear! We needed to create a teat that fed at the same speed as a cow and that calves needed to suckle hard from.

Observing that calves fed on the slower feeding tube feeder were healthier, it became clear that the speed of the milk flow and the right suckling action had a direct impact on calf health. This observation has been the single most influential factor in raising healthy calves.

With much trial and error, the Milk Bar™ Teat was born in 1992.
A combination of design and the specific rubber we use, stops calves gulping and becoming sick while the gravity design of the feeders makes life easier for farmers.

As we became more educated and invested in research, we also discovered other factors that impact overall calf digestion. The importance of saliva to aid curding and boost immunity, the necessity to keep the rumen free from milk to reduce acidosis. These things are directly impacted by feeding speed.
All the things we learn, we put into practice on our trial calves.

We have developed the perfect controlled flow teat to grow excellent calves and minimise health issues but every year we still develop and grow our knowledge so we can keep delivering the best solution for everyone out there raising calves.

Scroll through our story of how Milk Bar grew, we were once dairy farmers, just like you.