Wednesday, 31 May 2017 10:55

Selecting sires to benefit all farmers

Written by 
Murray King. Murray King.

LIC chairman Murray King says the co-op – owned by dairy farmers and sharemilkers – doesn’t prescribe what is right for individual farmers.

He says LIC provides choice so farmers can select the breeding programme best for their herd and farming business and budget.

Speaking at the LIC Breeder Day in Hamilton, King noted that this approach works for its farmers. For example, the Sire Proving and Premier Sires team of bulls. “By pooling information from the national herd LIC is able to select potential sires which in turn benefit the full membership.”

King says there is huge satisfaction in being part of an organisation which creates value and prosperity not just for today’s farmers, but for future generations.

“As a farmer, I can tell the breeders that I stand in awe of what you have achieved; not only are you successful dairy farmers, but you also have the distinction of belonging to a unique group of farmers who breed bulls good enough to bear the Premier Sires title.

“LIC is immensely proud of our partnership with you because of the value it delivers – not just this year, but for years to come, on the average Kiwi dairy farm, to the industry and to the New Zealand economy.”

LIC launched the Sire Proving Scheme 56 years ago. LIC has since proven 10,160 bulls; since 1986 it has bought bulls from 1612 farmer breeders.

King noted that as farming systems and preferences have changed so have the breed compositions. Total bulls proven to date equate to about 2% Ayrshire, 39% Jersey, 48% Holstein Friesian and now 10% KiwiCross.

King says all farmers can use Premier Sires knowing that future herd replacements will be better than their mothers – more efficient, more fertile, more productive and more profitable.

“With this realisation in mind, it’s hard to consider what the farmers of the 1930s and 1940s had to deal with.”

King says LIC, because of its size and farmer involvement, has always broken new ground in science and R&D.

“In addition to the modern technology there is still no substitute for the fundamental principles of good dairy herd improvement, in particular good record keeping, stockmanship and following superior family lines.”

More like this

Too busy to herd test in October

Cambridge dairy farmer and breeder Brad Payne would herd test ten times a year, but he works as an LIC AB Technician during October so reluctantly sacrifices data he’d get during that month of the year.


Dry cow therapy minus antibiotics

Taranaki sharemilker Shaun Eichstaedt was the first New Zealander to replace traditional antibiotic dry cow therapy (DCT) with a high-strength…

Changes are afoot

There has been a mixed response by the agriculture sector to the recently released Climate Change Commission’s 2021 draft report. 

Machinery & Products

Bigfoot comes up trumps

Call them what you will, but UTVs, or side-by-sides, have certainly found a place in much of New Zealand’s rural…

Merlo goes greener

Obviously not wishing to get left behind by some of its competitors, Italian manufacturer Merlo is planning to add to…

» The RNG Weather Report

» Latest Print Issues Online

Milking It

Oat milk sells

OPINION: Fake milk works for some. Fashionable Swedish alt-milk brand Oatly is seeking a US stock market listing that could…

Labour shortage

If you think labour shortage on New Zealand dairy farms is unique to our country, then think again.

» Connect with Dairy News

» eNewsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter