Commenting on the new dairy herd breeding guidelines being sent to farmers by the Department of Agriculture and ICBF this week, IFA National Dairy Chairman Tom Phelan said they were in keeping with the IFA policy on Managing Dairy Calves published last Autumn.
“In the last year, a great deal of work has been done by stakeholders, including IFA, to optimise dairy calf welfare, quality and value as dairy expansion increases calf numbers. To build upon this work, stakeholders have developed guidelines for the 2020/21 dairy breeding policy, and I would encourage all dairy farmers to consider them,” he said.
“Dairy farmers do not want to sacrifice the milk solids, easy calving, fertility and other positive dairy traits they have been selecting for using the EBI for years. The work carried out by ICBF and Teagasc, and supported by the other stakeholders, gives farmers options to keep those strong dairy traits while using strategies to improve the beef quality of their bull calves,” he concluded.