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Producers Saving Thousands with Semex ai24
23/11/08

Investing in Semex’s ai24 fertility management package is paying big dividends for producers, with yearly savings of over £23,000 being realised for a herd of 180 cows.

© www.jennifermackenzie.co.uk

dairy cows

This saving is due to a considerable reduction in calving intervals attributed to the ai24 heat detection system, with the average producer reporting a reduction of 40 days over a 10 month period – resulting in substantial milk production gains.

Tackling infertility in dairy herds is a key issue for producers, and letting calving intervals slip by even a few days can have massive implications in terms of lost milk production. The cost of infertility in an average herd in the UK has been put at around £141 per cow, or over £25,000 for 180 cows, with the part attributable to a longer calving interval estimated at £2.30 per cow per day. ** More recently experts from Bristol University’s veterinary practice calculated the cost of extending your calving interval from 396 to 425 days at £4.07 per day.***

Semex’s managing director Gordon Miller, commented on the reasons for its success: “ai24 has truly transformed farm businesses and set a new industry standard. The system offers real, measurable benefits in terms of saving money, time and effort. Taking into consideration the higher business costs currently faced by farmers, increased output and greater efficiencies are crucial for business survival, and this integrated fertility management system is helping farmers to achieve these goals. ”

Since ai24 was launched a year ago, over 400 producers across the UK have installed the system, which along with technologically advanced heat detection, includes Semex’s Promate mating programme, world-class Semex stud and expert technical training programmes and advice.

Gordon continued: “Producers who’ve signed up to the system can’t speak highly enough of its benefits, and new customers have largely come on board due to word-of-mouth recommendations. When we launched the system we talked about its potential – but the results can now speak for themselves. Access to money-savings coupled with a short payback period should certainly guarantee further interest in ai24.”

Semex has recently produced a DVD featuring interviews with farmers from across the UK who discuss how the ai24 system has boosted their profitability. The typical cost of ai24 for a 180 cow herd calving all year round is around £7,300, and with a calving interval reduction of 40 days the pay-back period is less than five months. For a 400 cow herd with a similar reduction in calving interval the payback period would decrease to just three months.

Payback Periods (months) for ai24
(assuming one extra reader and 40% of cows with collars)

Reduction in Calving Interval/ Number of cows 10 days 20 days 30 days 40 days
100 cows 18.6 9.3 6.2 4.6
200 cows 14.3 7.2 4.8 3.6
400 cows 12.2 6.1 4.1 3.0
Table compiled by Willie Tait, Genetics Manager, Semex UK

Along with an improved calving interval, the ai24 system also offers saving in terms of lower semen costs due to more accurate insemination times, lower vet and drug costs due to fewer animals being presented to the vet, and reduced culling due to infertility.

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