Australia's Three Breeding Indices

The three indexes

Australia’s three breeding indices take the hard work out of breeding for more than one trait at once. Choose the index that best matches your breeding priorities.

BPIHWItwibreeding choices

































It's all a matter of weighting

Australia’s three indices all account for the traits that affect profit and longevity in the herd. The difference is in the emphasis given to specific traits.

The Balanced Performance Index is an economic index that blends production, type and health traits for maximum profit. It reflects most farmers’ preferences.

The Health Weighted Index allows farmers to fast track traits such as fertility, mastitis resistance and feed efficiency.

The Type Weighted Index allows farmers to fine tune type traits to make a good herd even better.

BPI Pie chartHWI Pie ChartTWI Pie chart

The graph below shows the response you can expect for key traits if you use one of the indices consistently for 10 years.

10 years
















Base values (averages)

Indices and ABVs are relative measures, meaning they make more sense when compared to each other or to an average. The average, also known as the ‘base’ is a clearly defined group of animals to which all others are compared.

In Australia the average is defined as the cows of the same breed that are 6 years +/- 2 years of age. It is updated periodically so it reflects the cows that are milking in today’s herds.

For indices the average is set at 0.

Using your index

When working with your chosen index it is important to understand what the units mean. The BPI is expressed in dollar units, with the breed average set at zero. The HWI and TWI are both measured in units, with the breed average set at zero.













Farmer Perspectives

Mathew Radford looks forward to using the Type Weighted Index
Jared Ireland says ABVs and three indices essential tools
Jo & Bryan Dickson find BPI the perfect tool
High priority on health with James Neal
Tim Humphris keenly anticipates the Health Weighted Index
New indices give Jersey breeders more choice
BPI wins the day for Patrick Glass
BPI hits the mark for Carenda Holsteins