The complete package can mean different things to different people. Yvon Chabot, President and General Manager of Cormdale Exports Ltd., has many years of experience in the dairy industry judging, investing and working in sales. For him, the complete package must include type, pedigree and genomic potential.
At the top of Chabot’s list is type. “She doesn’t need to have show type, if it is an animal with numbers, but she needs to have good functional type, good feet and legs, good udder promise, width to her and a solid top line. She needs to be showing good development for her age.”
“Pedigree and sire line up” are second on Yvon’s criteria for a complete package. As an example, Yvon points to a purchase he made in February 2008 with Ferme Fleury of Victoriaville in Quebec. “We purchased Calbrett Shottle Lisamaree. She was a promising fresh two year old out of Shottle, who was emerging as a superstar with his second crop.” The investment has been very good. “We have sold daughters for top dollars, sold nearly 100 embryos and over 12 sons to AI. She is due now for her third calf and we hope to get her EX after she calves.” Type and pedigree in the same package.
3. GENOMIC POTENTIAL
“In the past, I would have liked to buy milking young cows out of the hot sire of the moment. That is what happened when we bought Lisamaree.” But that was before genomics. In the changing marketplace, Yvon responds to new demands. “Now, most of the genetic business is done with virgin heifers in order to produce the next generation of high indexing animals. Now, I would say, that heifers between 4-8 months would be the age group where I would like to buy into.” Young sires with high genomics are used extensively in flushing. Everybody wants to have the #1 heifer/bull of the next generation.
YOU KNOW YOUR COWS. IT’S TIME TO KNOW YOURSELF.
- Do your own homework
You’ve heard it before, but Yvon says it again. “Look at sales reports from the last 6-12 months, to see which cow families, which offspring of which bull and what level of indexes bring top dollars .This will give you an indication of the possible returns on potential investments. Talk to merchandisers, export agents and AI people to gather as much information as possible on cow families, what sires are being used and so on.
- Be patient
Don’t expect your investment to be paid for in full within six months. Think long term. Sometimes, if flush performance is not great it may take longer to see a return. You might not be able to move too many embryos, but, with time, merchandising live offspring could make your investment valuable.
The COMPLETE PACKAGE. The GIFT THAT KEEPS ON GIVING.
It is a proud day when everything you’re looking for comes together in one animal as it did for Chabot and his partners when they purchased Lylehaven Lila Z. “We purchased her the week after I had placed her at the Royal Winter Fair in 2002. It was kind of special as it was the first significant investment I was making on my own. She had been purchased with Gen-I-Beq group and Mary Inn Holsteins.” She went on to perform, winning the All-Canadian title in the Junior Yearling class. “We later sold Lila Z for a significant amount of money to Albert Cormier and Genervations a few months before she was due with her first calf.” For Chabot, Lila Z’s impact did not end with her sale. Yvon bought her daughter at the Comestar Sale in 2006. “I invested in Comestar Goldwyn Lava, the Goldwyn daughter of Lila Z along with Groupe Gen-I-Beq and a friend from France Frédéric Lepoint. We still own Lava. She has been a great donor and has become a great brood cow. We have been able to merchandise over 100 embryos from her and she has over 20 sons in AI around the world, many offspring have been sold for good money and we are working with her daughters .Her son Lavaman has been the top GLPI bull for a couple of proof rounds.” Lila Z certainly represents investing in the complete package.
The Bullvine Bottom Line
Success in cattle investing happens when you find the total package: “Lila Z wrote an impressive story. I am proud to be part of it.” Yvon Chabot
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