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BDGP – Female Replacement Strategy – Deadline 31st October 2020

Martina Harrington, Beef Specialist, reminds suckler farmers in BDGP that they have only a fortnight left to the deadline to meet the 50% female replacement strategy. Under this measure farmers who signed up to the BDGP scheme almost 6 years ago have to have 50% of their reference number by Oct 31st

This reference number is written on your BDGP Eurostar reports and looks like this 

The penalty for not meeting this target is a 140% of your gross payment, that is before the cost of genotyping. In figures this means that if you were being paid €1,600, you will get no payment from the BDGP scheme this year and you will be deducted a further €600 from another scheme such as BPS and you will also have to pay for your genotype tags.

Not meeting the 50% requirement  - what can you do?

There is one more genomic evaluation to run on the 24th of November, which is after the deadline. You may have genotype tags sent away and be hoping that some females will qualify from this run. This strategy is risky, if they do not qualify then you have missed the deadline and will receive a 140% penalty.

If you do not have ungenotyped 4 or 5 star females due to receive a genomic evaluation before the end of the programme, your only option to meet your herd’s Oct 2020 requirement is to purchase eligible females. These purchased females will need to:

  1. Have a genomic evaluation (genomic component included in Euro-Star Index).
  2. Be 4 or 5-stars on the Replacement Index within and/or across breed at the time of purchase.
  3. Be at least 16 months of age by the 31st of October i.e. born before 30th June 2019.
  4. Be born after the 1st of January 2013

Purchasing in a mart

Most marts are now displaying the Euro-Star Index details for females. The ICBF section on the mart screen now defines whether a female will be eligible for BDGP or not once purchased (see screenshot below). Where a female has a ‘Yes’ under ‘BDGP Eligible’, it will automatically be counted towards your eligible females target on entering the herd.

The new ‘Mart Tracker’ facility on the ICBF website (www.icbf.com) allows you to see the BDGP eligible females which are available in marts each day.

Purchasing privately

Should you decide to purchase animals privately, ensure that you check the index and age details as listed above. After that you must be certain you are looking at the most up to date Euro-Star Index details for the animal(s). To be sure I would use the ICBF ‘Animal Search’ to check the index details of the animal (see screenshot below). It will show you date of birth and current evaluation. This is available on the ICBF website www.icbf.com. Alternatively, if using a smartphone you can use the ‘Animal Search App’ to check an animal’s Euro-Star Index. The app is available to download free for Apple and Android phones.   Do not use the index details in the BDGP Eligibility Report when buying animals as this is particular to the sellers farm.  


Monitor your situation

You can monitor your herd’s compliance online by logging into www.icbf.com. Under the ‘View Profiles’ dropdown click ‘BDGP Eligibility’. This profile is always up to take and will take into account purchases, sales death etc. Any targets which your herd is non-compliant on will be highlighted in red.

See this video shot in Kildalton College with Chris Daly from ICBF that explains all.