Beef Data and Genomics Programme Opens to New Applications

The Beef Data and Genomics Programme (BDGP)  has reopened to allow those not currently in the scheme to take part – get the details.

The scheme will be known as BDGP II and will, like the original, commit to six years of payments to farmers for completion of actions aimed at delivering accelerated genetic improvement in the national herd and improvement of its environmental sustainability.

The scheme will require farmers to complete the same actions as in the original BDGP over the course of six years, starting in 2017 and concluding in 2022. There is a change to the timing of the training and carbon navigator requirements, which must be completed in year one of this scheme.

Payments to participants will be the same as BDGPI – the equivelant of €95 per cow on the first 10 cows and €80 per cow on the remainder. The same timing requirements apply for returning of data.

The scheme opened for applications on 19th April and the closing date is Monday 8th May2017. For further details on the application process by contacting the Department’s offices in Portlaoise on [email protected] or 076 1064423.

Read the full terms and conditions 


Payment will be made at the rate of €142.50 for each of the first 6.66 hectares of eligible forage area and €120 on the remaining eligible forage area. The eligible hectares on which an applicant is entitled to claim will be equal to the number of calved cows on his/her holding in 2014 (known as reference animals) divided by a standard stocking rate of 1.5. This is subject to a limit which is set by the eligible forage land declared by the applicant on his/her 2014 SPS application.

Six actions required

Requirement 1 – Calving details

Register all new born calves within 27 days of birth, provide sire number and complete survey relating to calving ease.

Requirement 2 – Surveys

Complete a range of surveys relating to the calves, cows and bulls in the applicant’s herd.

Requirement 3 – Genotyping

Genotype all of the animals specified by the ICBF. Each year, the number to be genotyped will be equivalent to 60% of the number of reference animals on an applicant’s holding in 2014.

Requirement 4 – Replacement strategy

Stock bull
At least one stock bull on the holding on 30 June 2021 must be a bull that has been genotyped 4 or 5 star on either the Terminal or Replacement index and this, or a similar 4 or 5 star bull, must be retained on the holding until 30 June 2022. Applicants are strongly advised to introduce 4 or 5 star bulls at the next replacement date to avoid compliance difficulties

When using AI, at least 80% of the AI used must be from 4 or 5 star bulls on the Terminal or Replacement index. This applies from 30th June 2018.

Leased bulls
Where it is the practice of the applicant to lease a bull, he/she must notify the Department by 30 June 2018 of his/her intention to do so during the course of the scheme.

Female replacements
Applicants will be required to ensure that a percentage of his/her heifers/eligible Suckler cows are genotyped females that are:

  1.  4 or 5 stars on the replacement index
  2. at least 16 months old and
  3. born in 2015 or later if not in the herd by the closing date for application.

The number of heifers/eligible suckler cows meeting these requirements on each holding on 31st October 2020 must be equivalent to 20% of the number of the applicant’s reference animals (established based on 2014 stocking levels) and on 31st October 2022 must be equivalent to 50% of the applicant’s reference animals.

Requirement 5 – Carbon Navigator

Applicants must complete a carbon navigator with an approved advisor before 31 October 2017 and provide data for it to be annually updated. This is a tool which estimates the potential green house gas reductions and financial savings that could be made on each farm.

Requirement 6 – Training

Applicants must attend a training course relating to this scheme before 31 October 2017.

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