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    AI - BPEX Helps To Get It Right
11/05/06

The British Pig Executive (BPEX) has taken another major step forward to improving the productivity of the British pig herd with the launch of an Artificial Insemination programme.

© www.bpex.org.uk

pigs

The programme itself was launched at the British Pig and Poultry Fair at Stoneleigh Park, by BPEX Chief Executive Mick Sloyan.

There are four key elements to the programme:

  • An advice and information package for producers
  • A national reference laboratory
  • On-farm recording to monitor progress
  • The introduction of a BPEX quality standard for
    semen

Mick said: "The first element is aimed at helping producers. Many of them have either been forced, or stumbled, into AI and may not have had much help or guidance. The package is based on best-practice and will provide an invaluable resource.

"The reference laboratory is based at Leeds and they will have responsibility for assessing semen quality. BPEX has invested in leading edge technology for the objective measurement of semen quality.

"The idea is that we will have both the expertise and the technology to carry out the measurement. The breeding companies will also be able to use the system for testing semen.

"The on-farm recording will be carried out through the existing Agrosoft network.

"We have the help of about 60 producers from across the country and the analysis of their results that will enable us to see if breeding herd performance is improving and if so by how much.

"Finally, we are introducing the BPEX quality standard for AI. This extends the concept of assurance back from the farm to the supplied genetics. This involves a written standard subject to annual independent audit.

"To date the major firms have all signed up to this, including ACMC, Hermitage Seaborough, JSR, PIC and Rattlerow.

"This is a very important step for the whole industry. British producers are well behind their European competitors in breeding herd performance this programme will help to close the gap and improve their competitive position."

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