Moree herd dispersal sale to take place on Friday as Kelso brothers end partnership

Jonathan, Bertie and Andrew Kelso, owners of Moree Holsteins, have announced their intention to sell off the entire milking group within the renowned black and white herd.

The dispersal sale will take place, on-farm, on Friday, May 10. Events get underway at 11:30am. Auctioneer Michael Taaffe will be in the rostrum.

“We have decided to end the partnership for a number of reasons,” Jonathan explained.

“Nothing stays the same forever; Dad is at an age where he wants to take more of a back seat, Andrew has some issues with his joints and, in my case, I want to further the breeding business JK Genetics – [the] marketing and sourcing of embryos and elite stock.”


A total of 180 milking animals have been included in the sale catalogue. Also included are five special calves, three bulls and four embryo lots.

The Kelso family has been milking cows near Rock in south Tyrone, Northern Ireland, for well over a century. The Moree pedigree herd was established 30 years ago.

Moree Nadal Marq I VG87 – a two-year-old contracted to the Republic of Ireland and New Zealand for embryos is among the sale’s star lots

The herd has an extremely young age profile. Contained within the milking group are close to 90 heifers and 60 second-calvers. The current herd production average is 10,833L at 4.01% butterfat and 3.30% protein.

Jonathan continued: “All cows catalogued in the sale are currently averaging in excess of 40L/day with the top cow yielding 80L.”

The Moree herd is home to some of the world’s top black and white bloodlines. These include cows from the Baler Twine, Belle, Cosmopolitan and Marq 1 families.

The sale follows confirmation that the Kelso family has been recognised by Holstein UK as a recipient of a ‘Master Breeder’ accolade. The presentation of the award will take place during this year’s Balmoral Show.

“The Master Breeder award recognises our commitment to breeding for yield, components, type and longevity,” Jonathan said.

“A number of the animals will be sold with embryo contracts in place with breeders in the New Zealand and the Republic of Ireland. These agreements value the embryos produced at £450 each.”

The Kelso family

Lot 28 in the sale Maple Amber EX91 has also been entered for this year’s Balmoral Show along with Fever Twine VG88-3yr and Mardi Gras Sheena VG88-3yr.

The most recent AI sires used on the herd include Nihao, Montoya, Hotspot P, AltaLeap, etc. with stock selling sired by Avenger P, Supersire, Josuper, and Commander.

The Moree herd is also home to a selection of the UK’s elite polled Holsteins. Included in this line-up is the UK’s number one polled heifer. She is closely related to the 43,000gns cow, sold at the recent Wiltor sale.

Jonathan concluded: “The upcoming sale reflects the entire scope of our breeding strategies for the herd over recent years.

“For those wanting to purchase an elite animal to develop a new cow family or commercial farmers wanting oceans of milk from fertile long-living cows, there will be something on offer for everyone.

“We will be delighted to facilitate all viewing enquiries prior to the event.”

For further information, telephone Jonathan Kelso on: 07729-218-118. The sale catalogue can be viewed online at: