As the breeding season for the dairy herd gets into full swing, the critical ICBF Dairy Beef Index (January 2023) confirms Aubrac as “the top-performing beef breed for dairy farmers”.
This critical index supports the breeding goal for Irish dairy and beef farmers to promote high-quality beef cattle bred from the dairy herd that are more saleable as calves and profitable at slaughter.
The index is also designed to select beef sires and breeds that have minimal consequences for dairy farmers on calving difficulty or the gestation length of the dairy cow.
Aubrac takes the top position across all four percentile categories in the ICBF index and exceeds other beef breeds by a significant margin in monetary terms.
The ICBF Dairy Beef Index tracks several key traits that are important to dairy-beef production systems, including easy calving, short gestation, and less calf mortality.
It also reflects important beef traits, including heavier carcasses of greater conformation and lower fat scores.
Commenting, James Donnellan, Chairman of the Irish Aubrac Cattle Breed Society, who farms Aubrac cattle organically in Co. Galway, said:
“At this time of year, dairy farmers are making critical breeding decisions, for both replacements and for their beef cross sires.”
“As far as possible, it is best to take decisions supported by solid data. The latest ICBF Dairy Beef Index is confirming Aubrac as the top performing beef choice for dairy farmers.”
“Choosing Aubrac will mitigate calving risk and the length of gestation while providing the dairy farmer with high-quality beef cattle that have a ready market and produce finished cattle with excellent conformation and kill-out percentages. Aubrac beef is also gaining in popularity for its flavour among consumers.”
“The ICBF Dairy Beef Index confirms that Aubrac should be in every dairy farmer’s beef selection this breeding season,” he added.