Genomic testing proves popular

GENOMIC testing of dairy cows and heifers has doubled in the past twelve months as farmers look to fast-track herd genetic gain and productivity.

Almost 50,000 dairy females were tested during 2020-21, a result of faster turnaround times for genomic data, favourable industry conditions and a Dairy Australia/DataGene genomic testing campaign, according to DataGene CEO Matthew Shaffer.

Matthew reported this positive step for herd improvement at DataGene’s virtual annual general meeting today (November 18, 2021).

Another highlight of the year was the co-development with herd test centres of a new service, HerdPlatform, that allows dairy farmers to interact with their data online and gain new insights into their business.

Also at the AGM, Kolora, Victoria dairy farmer, Daniel Meade was elected to the board of DataGene, and herd improvement industry veteran of 45-years Graeme Gillan was re-elected.

Daniel milks 400 cows with his wife Michaela and is a Nuffield Scholar. Before he started dairy farming in his own right, Daniel spent 10 years working as a dairy agronomist and studied at Glenormiston Agricultural College.

Daniel replaces Simone Jolliffe (Currajugle Holsteins Holsteins, Euberta, NSW) who completed her term and chose not to re-nominate.

DataGene Chair, Ross Joblin welcomed Daniel to the board, welcomed Graeme back for an additional term and thanked Simone for her contribution to DataGene.

“Simone, your chairing of the Herd Improvement Industry Strategic Steering Group (HIISSG) and the Genetic Evaluation Standing Committee has been integral to the success of DataGene,” he said.

DataGene is an initiative of Dairy Australia and the herd improvement industry.