Good for the herd, environment

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When something seems overwhelming, you have to break it down into manageable chunks for the result to be achieved.

Unfortunately, when it comes to what dairy farmers need to do to comply with environmental requirements, it’s not that easy to break it down into chunks: no one really knows exactly what’s required or when – we know. just let it happen.

Dairy farmers are likely to face significant changes over the next few years that will impact the way we farm. The unknown can be quite intimidating.

He Waka Eke Noa: We know that by 2025 all farmers will include in their plans ‘climate change mitigation’ and ‘adaptation in their farm and environment’ commitments – which basically means that farmers will calculate the net greenhouse gas emissions and will be encouraged to act on climate change.

In 2019, the Climate Change Response Amendment Act established a national target for 2050: net zero emissions of all greenhouse gases (other than biogenic methane) by 2050.

There is also an increased awareness of animal welfare issues centered on bobby calves, hornless and heat resistant genes.

While there is a huge amount of research going on to enable farmers to meet future goals that focus on the environment and animal welfare, there doesn’t seem to be a lot of tools in the box. tools here and now.

Not only does this have a positive effect on the profitability of farms, but it contributes greatly to a better environmental footprint.

Raising your best animals is easy to do, and it’s available here and now.

The focus on improving the herd through the use of quality genetic choices is a key part of solving the environmental footprint puzzle.

As noted in the recent inaugural LIC Sustainability Report, 30 years of breeding by dairy farmers using LIC genetics has reduced methane emissions by 13% and 16% less urinary nitrogen per kilogram of solids. dairy products.

Animals with high genetic value are more environmentally efficient because they distribute a greater proportion of their food consumed in milk solids and less in waste.

The report also states that for every additional $ 10 benefit, an animal typically has 2g less enteric methane and 1.7g less urine nitrogen per kilogram of milk solids production.

So while the environmental path may seem daunting or even overwhelming right now, we can all focus on the first step and break it down into what we can do now.

For example, with LIC’s Premier Sires Forward Pack teams having a breeding advantage over its traditional Daughter Proven contemporaries between BW $ 18 and $ 30, if you were to elect the Forward Pack, you would be committing to environmental improvements. thanks to the genetics that you would retain in your herd. And more and more farmers are doing it.

Good for their herd, good for the environment.

Greg Hamill, Genetics LIC Sales Director


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