An artificial insemination (AI) company based in Co. Meath has launched a new tool to assist beef farmers in finding calves sired by its AI beef bulls.

The programme is titled the ‘Dairy Beef Plus Programme‘ and was launched by Progressive Genetics on Wednesday, February 16.

According to a statement from Progressive Genetics, the primary aim of the venture is “to improve genetic merit of beef calves from the dairy herd”.

The tool also aims to provide dairy farmers with a new outlet for their AI beef-bred calves, while also providing the beef farmer with genetic information to make informed decisions when purchasing calves.

The AI company is confident the programme’s progeny will have higher carcass weights and conformation.

While the calves on offer in the programme will likely command a premium price, beef farmers will benefit from the programme by having access to better-quality beef-sired dairy calves.

For dairy farmers to be eligible:

  • Cows must be majority Holstein/Friesian type within the herd;
  • Qualifying dairy farmers must use sires that achieve a minimum of €35 on their beef sub-index;
  • A minimum of 30 AI straws from qualifying beef straws must be used annually; and
  • Farmers must agree to share personal details on the Progressive Genetics website in order to provide relevant information for beef farmers when sourcing calves for purchase.

The contact details of qualifying farmers that used 30+ qualifying beef AI straws (Beef Sub Index €35) is now available on the Progressive Genetics website.

Calf buyers can set up an account and will be able to view dairy herds which will have these higher genetic-merit calves available.

Contact details for farmers with eligible calves are available on the website also.