Norwegian Red genetics reach global high
Geno, Norway's cattle genetics cooperative, has reported record global sales of its Norwegian Red genetics. Geno continues to lead the world in exports of red dairy cattle semen and now has a 23% margin over other red dairy cattle breeds making Norwegian Red the most popular exported red breed worldwide.
"We have seen the Norwegian Red breed grow in popularity year-on-year but with particularly rapid increases in the past three years," says Geno managing director Sverre Bjørnstad.
With the breed now sold in 30 markets worldwide, its top five markets in 2015 were the US, UK, Holland, Italy and Poland.
"Producers see the Norwegian Red as an ideal breed for crossing with Holstein cows, and in all rotation crossing programs. They are confident that the Norwegian Red-sired replacement will milk very well and, at the same time, bring huge health, fertility and longevity benefits. And they will also have the benefit of a more valuable bull calf," Mr Bjørnstad adds.
The success of Norwegian Red crossbreds in many herds, with milk component yields similar to those from pure Holsteins and dramatically better fertility and health traits, is leading to organic growth in semen sales. Data from the US shows that crossbreeding with Norwegian Red reduces costs and increases profit, with the most recent study showing an increase in net profit per cow per year of USD$75 when compared to top purebred Holsteins.
"The careful breeding program implemented more than 40 years ago in Norway is serving the breed well," says Mr Bjørnstad. "Sire selection has been based on excellent health, fertility, calving ease and milk production data during this time. We know from routine records in many countries that fertility and daughter pregnancy rates are higher in Norwegian Red crosses compared to other crosses.
"Producers worldwide are looking for a consistent herd of well-balanced cows that are strong, healthy, reliable and with excellent milk production. I am sure that is why we are seeing the Norwegian Red breed outselling other breeds for crossbreeding programs."
Geno is the breeding organization of Norwegian Red, the main dairy breed in Norway. It as a farmer cooperative that has been conducting research and development for cattle breeding since 1935. Geno produces over 1.3 million doses of semen from elite Norwegian Red bulls each year and distributes genetic material to more than 30 countries worldwide. Geno's vision: Breeding for better lives. Geno's Head Office is at Hamar, Norway.
Contact for more information:
Gary W. Rogers, Ph.D, Technical Advisor, Geno USA
Mari Bjørke, VP Communication and Marketing, Geno SA
Tel. +47 907 78 301