Using the ‘Next Generation Herd’ to proof the future direction of the national breeding programme
The Next Generation Herd is a unique strategic resource that continues to provide sound scientific knowledge with regard to genetic improvement of Ireland’s dairy herd. To date, it has provided leadership/assurance that the EBI and our national breeding strategy will deliver. It enables us to understand more deeply the fundamental consequences of genetic change in key performance traits.
The Next Generation Research herd focuses on the validation of:
- Genetic gain achieved through selection for high EBI will continue to deliver improved cow performance, resulting in more profit and greater resilience for our national dairy herd.
- High EBI Jersey genetics, in practical terms via crossbreeding, can contribute additional productivity gains (milk solids output per ha) resulting in further profit generating potential.
- A Nucleus herd of elite [high EBI] females (both Holstein-Friesian and Jersey) can be effective in contributing to the supply of high EBI young bulls for the Irish Dairy Industry