CLARIFIDE® the simple genomic test from Zoetis, will now be available through vets and National Milk Records (NMR).
Genomics is becoming an integral tool in UK dairy herds that offers great advantages to producers.
Dairy farmer Patrick Morris-Eyton, Beckside, Millom, Cumbria, believes genomic testing is something every dairy farmer should take advantage of as a cost-effective way to find out accurately the predicted performance of individual heifers.
CLARIFIDE gives strategic breeding options with the added value of a bespoke consultancy package through trained veterinary surgeons. It allows testing of animals from six breeds; Holstein, British Friesian, Guernsey, Jersey, Ayrshire and Brown Swiss.
With just one simple test and up to 70% reliability, CLARIFIDE gives a prediction on;
- Health and Fitness
- Production and Management
- Type and Composites
- Milk Protein Components
- Parentage and Inbreeding
This is compared to just 15-30% reliability when selecting heifers using Parent Averages or less than 1% if selecting by eye.
CLARIFIDE test results are accessible on a bespoke, intuitive online analysis tool, called SearchPoint. SearchPoint allows farmers to determine which animals will be most profitable on their farm. As well as access to important UK traits and £PLI (Profitable Lifetime Index), US data is also available as an optional extra.
The partnership with NMR will increase the accessibility of CLARIFIDE for farmers by making the test available through vet practices and NMR.
NMR will continue to offer its Genetracker genomics testing service, which will be powered by CLARIFIDE, and will now be available to all main dairy breeds.
Zoetis genomics business manager, Phil Cullinan said: “Having easy access to CLARIFIDE will help farmers speed up genetic progress and reduce upfront costs on farm. It costs £2.31 a day or £1,819.011 on average to rear a dairy heifer replacement with the payback taking until the middle of her second lactation1. By predicting a heifer’s ability earlier, farmers can manage the upfront costs by only keeping the heifers they want and significantly increase their overall rate of genetic gain.”
Richard Miller, NMR’s genomics manager, added: “CLARIFIDE and Genetracker users will benefit from a more integrated and comprehensive service. Both services will have automatic access to Agricultural and Horticultural Development Board (AHDB) data and offer accurate reporting and results analysis options.
Dairy farmer Patrick Morris-Eyton, Beckside, Millom, Cumbria, believes genomic testing is something every dairy farmer should take advantage of. “£33 is nothing compared to rearing a heifer and it is a cost-effective way to find out accurately what the predicted performance of that animal is. Anyone in a commercial herd that is not genomic testing is bonkers,” he said.
Although he has only been genomic testing heifers for the past two years, he has already seen a big improvement. His herd’s average £PLI has increased from £260 to £300 and has taken it from the top 15% based on £PLI to the top 5%.
Although new to the UK, CLARIFIDE is well established in other markets where the impact on tested farms has been substantial. CLARIFIDE has been found to improve profitability over twice as fast as the industry average2.
Farmers testing with CLARIFIDE have seen increased milk production, a reduction in their calving to conception interval and improvement in first service conception of 14% by breeding from the top 25% compared to the bottom 25%2.
Genetics has a direct effect on an animal’s productivity, profitability and herd health. Farmers wishing to use CLARIFIDE to help them achieve their herd goals more quickly can find out more here.