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New Beef Manual: Choosing bulls for Better Returns

A new guide to Beef breeding has been compiled by Alex Brown (Beef Breeding Projects Manager) and Amy Hughes (Knowledge Exchange Manager) covering a wide range of subjects. This guide is a useful tool for anyone that is involved in beef breeding. The guide highlights the importance of breeding in any beef production system and how to select superior animals for breeding. Selec ...

New breeding tools will help beef farmers boost profits

Five new Estimated Breeding Values (EBVs) have been developed to help farmers improve profits by producing more animals that meet target specification. AHDB Beef & Lamb has developed the EBVs in conjunction with Scotland’s Rural College and Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales and these are now being released as the AHDB National Beef Evaluations. The five new EBVs are: ...

Beef Carcase Traits Project – Update Dec 2017

Work to convert AHDB and HCC funded research for abattoir derived carcase information into EBVs for beef and dairy cattle took another step closer this month, with the receipt of a new set of breeding values as part of on-going research. The striking part of this work is the sheer number of cattle that are now included in this multi-breed analysis, with over 65,000 sires with ...

Beef Feed Efficiency Programme expands across Great Britain – October 2017

Reducing feed costs can make a big difference to the bottom line of all beef businesses. Enabling farmers to do that without affecting performance is the aim of the Defra and AHDB-funded Beef Feed Efficiency Programme. So far, feed intake records from 1,200 cattle have been collected which will be used to identify the genetic differences between the sires of those animals in t ...

Simmental Beef EBVs in Action

Simon P. Marsh, Principal Lecturer, Harper Adams University – Feb 2017 Click the link to read about the sixth study from Harper Adams comparing progeny performance from bulls with varying indexes. All six studies have shown that progeny from bulls with better figures and reasonably high levels of accuracy, perform better in the commercial herd. Omorga Volvo & Starline De ...

Using Abattoir Data to Create EBVs

New EBVs for Beef Cattle Click the link below to read the final project report for the EBVs from abattoir data project. The project combines real abattoir carcase data and information from other national databases, including BCMS, to create genetic evaluations for actual carcase weight, conformation, fat class and age at slaughter. EBVs have been produced for nearly 3 millio ...

Guidance Notes for DNA Testing

Click the link to read the latest guidance from AHDB on collection and storage protocols for DNA testing in cattle and sheep. ...

Beef Carcase Traits Project – The Breeds Involved

Beef producers in the UK aim to produce high quality meat as efficiently as possible but ultimately, payments for cattle relate to their carcase weight, conformation and fatness – with producers aiming for an R4L carcase or better on the EUROP grid. To provide commercial producers with better tools to aid bull selection, AHDB Beef & Lamb, AHDB Dairy and HCC funded a resear ...

Recording sire information on BCMS passports generates new breeding tools for carcase traits.

Kim Matthews and Samuel Boon Whilst improvements in carcase conformation and fat class have been observed over the last decade, at present only 55% of prime cattle slaughtered in Britain met the target of E, U or R for conformation and 1, 2, 3 or 4L for fat class. One means of improving carcase quality is to breed cattle with better carcase characteristics. Currently this i ...

The review of genetic improvement in UK beef cattle and sheep is now online

Genetic improvement delivers substantial economic benefit to the UK’s sheep and beef industries. The financial benefit to UK sheep producers via increased productivity is £10.7 million per year, with beef producers gaining £4.9 million. Following on from a review of genetic improvement in the UK’s sheep and beef industries in 2007 by Amer et al., a similar review was conducted ...