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Stackyard News Mar 09

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Atlantic Crossing for Challenge Winners

Two dairy producers are looking forward to their visit to the US later this year as winners of World Wide Sires' challenge competition.


World Wide Sires UK

Both producers won first prizes in the competition, out of more than 1000 entries, which quizzed their knowledge of the company's World Wide Mating Service (WMS).

The two producers, John Harries from Goodwick, Pembrokeshire and Richard Davies from Dartford, Kent will tour dairy units in Wisconsin as part of their trip and see how use of the WMS has improved breeding management and overall performance in US herds. They will also pay a visit to the World Dairy Expo in Madison.

John Harries has the Strumble herd of pedigree Holsteins at Velindre Farm, St Nicolas, Goodwick, Pembrokeshire - named after Strumble Head lighthouse on this westerly tip of Pembrokeshire.

With a milking herd of 400 cows and selling surplus heifers, John breeds all his cows to a Holstein bull and is keen to select the best bull for each cow. So, as a user of WMS, he values the opportunity to evaluate each cow for 17 different traits and get a short list of the most suitable bulls from more than 1,000 on WMS.

Also keen to see WMS working on US farms is Richard Davies from Kent. Having used the scheme for the first time this winter, Richard is eager to witness the sort of results he can expect in his own unit of 250 pedigree Holsteins that he manages at Bower Park Farm, Eynsford, Dartford.

WMS is the most widely used of any mating scheme around the globe. Available to all UK producers free of charge, uptake is increasing and already the scheme is used as part of the breeding planning on 150,000 cows across the country. World Wide Sires employ a team of five dedicated evaluators that work with the breeding advisers in the regions on behalf of producers.

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