It’s like the soccer World Cup but for Dairy Cows.  The European Championships are organized by the European Holstein & Red Holstein Confederation every two years and this year 16 countries (Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, Italy, Luxemburg, Netherlands, Poland, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland) will be participating in this outstanding event.

Great News!!!  The Bullvine will be LIVE streaming the show.

Host city Fribourg

Host city Fribourg

In 2013, the event is being held in Fribourg, a city located at the cultural border between the German and French speaking parts of Switzerland.  Fribourg 2013 is going to be something special, since Switzerland itself represents one of Europe’s countries in the show ring.

Setup has already begun.

Setup has already begun.

The Schedule

Tuesday 26 February
08:00 onwards Arrival of the animals

Friday 1 March
08:00 – 16:00 Farms visits
16:00 – 17:30 Showmanship: young breeders final
18:30 – 20:00 Opening ceremony
20:30 onwards Swiss European Sale

Saturday 2 March
9:30 – 11:30 Red Holstein championship: “Individual” / “National Groups”
13:00 – 16:00 Holstein championship: “Individual”
16:00 – 18:00 Holstein championship: “National Groups”
18:00 – 19:00 Prize‐giving ceremony
20:00 onwards Breeders’ fondue party

Sunday 3 March
8:00 onwards Departure of the animals
8:00 – 16:00 Farms visits

The Classes

Different from the standard classes many North Americans would be accustomed to, the classes for the All-European Championships for Holstein and Red Holstein are as follows:

  • Junior category: only 1st lactation cows, having calved, up to 32 months.
  •  Intermediate category: only cows having calved twice, up to 60 months as at 1 March 2013 (born 1 March 2008 or later).
  • Senior category: only cows having calved three times or more (at least two completed lactations).

In addition:

  • 1st Lactation cows must make up at least 20% of a country’s contingent.  The same applies to cows having calved twice.
  • All cows must have been born in Europe and must have been recorded in the herdbook of the participating country since 1 March 2012 or before (subject to milk testing).  All the cows and reserve cows must be registered by 25 January 2013 at the latest.

The Judges

Presiding over the Holstein classes will be David Boyd from Glaslough Holsteins in Ireland whilst the Red classes will take place under the watchful eye of Niels Erik Haahr of Anderstrup Holsteins, Denmark.

Holstein show judge David Boyd from Glaslough Holsteins

Holstein show judge David Boyd from Glaslough Holsteins

David Boyd is an Irish breeder who runs a dairy farm with his brother in Glaslough.  There are 50 dairy cows and 80 heifers in their Glaslough Holsteins herd.  The average output is 10,300 kg of milk over 305 days at 3.69% fat and 3.29% protein.  There are 14 EX cows and 33 VG ones in the herd.  In 2011, 20 first-calf heifers were classified VG, with two of these receiving a VG88 classification.  David has enjoyed a great deal of success at shows.  In particular, he was named the Best Breeder and the Best Exhibitor at the Irish National Show in 2011.  David has been accredited as a judge by the Irish Holstein Friesian Association for more than 20 years and he is also a member of the IHFA board.  He has judged at a large number of shows in Ireland, the UK, Portugal and Italy.  He has also taken part in the last four workshops for European judges.

Niels Erik Haahr of Anderstrup Holsteins Red Holstein Show Judge

Niels Erik Haahr of Anderstrup Holsteins Red Holstein Show Judge

Niels Erik Haahr is a Danish breeder whose family owns the Anderstrup Holsteins dairy herd.  They have 300 cows with an average output over 365 days of 14,600 kg of milk.  They have developed an intensive Anderstrup Holsteins breeding program, with more than 200 calves per year resulting from embryo transfers.  The scheme produces numerous bulls for AI centers in Denmark and Germany.  Anderstrup Holsteins is also heavily involved in competitions and it has already won 25 awards at the National Show.  Niels Erik Haahr has been judging since the age of 16 and he is now an accredited judge.  He has performed judging duties at many important regional shows in Denmark and at the National Show on four occasions.

 

The Contenders

From the host nation, Switzerland, comes one of the strongest contenders Decrausaz Iron O’Kalibra EX-94, who many of the North American experts say could walk on the colored shavings at Madison and give the North American cows a run for their money.

Decrausaz Iron O'Kalibra EX-94 1st 5yr old, Champion Udder, Grand & Supreme Champion- Swiss Expo, Lausanne 2012 1st 4yr old and Res. Champion Udder and HM Grand Champion- Swiss Expo, Lausanne 2011 1st 4yr old and Reserve Grand Champion- Expo Bulle 2011  (from the same family as Dudoc Mr. Burns and Granduc Tribute)

Decrausaz Iron O’Kalibra EX-94
1st 5yr old, Champion Udder, Grand & Supreme Champion- Swiss Expo, Lausanne 2012
1st 4yr old and Res. Champion Udder and HM Grand Champion- Swiss Expo, Lausanne 2011
1st 4yr old and Reserve Grand Champion- Expo Bulle 2011
(from the same family as Dudoc Mr. Burns and Granduc Tribute)

However, there are many other cows to watch for including:

Ashlyn Vray EX-94-ES

Ashlyn Vray EX-94-ES

M.E.DAL STORMATIC ILMA 2010 European Intermediate Champion

M.E.DAL STORMATIC ILMA
2010 European Intermediate Champion

Ptit Coeur Iron Dirona EX-96-SW

Ptit Coeur Iron Dirona EX-96-SW

Lavenham Adeen EX-92 Daughter of MS KINGSTEAD CHIEF ADEEN EX-94

Lavenham Adeen EX-92
Daughter of MS KINGSTEAD CHIEF ADEEN EX-94

Riverdane Talented Ashlyn VG88 EX90-MS 2YR Nominated Intermediate Heifer in Milk All Britain 2012 1st Milking Heifer & Supreme Champion Holstein & Best Udder Cheshire County Show 2012  1st Junior 2yr & Reserve Champion Holstein Heifer Great Yorkshire Show 2012

Riverdane Talented Ashlyn VG88 EX90-MS 2YR
Nominated Intermediate Heifer in Milk All Britain 2012
1st Milking Heifer & Supreme Champion Holstein & Best Udder Cheshire County Show 2012
1st Junior 2yr & Reserve Champion Holstein Heifer Great Yorkshire Show 2012

 

The Past Champions

CASTEL JAMES JOLIE 2010 European Senior and Grand Champion

CASTEL JAMES JOLIE
2010 European Senior and Grand Champion

M.E.DAL STORMATIC ILMA 2010 European Intermediate Champion

M.E.DAL STORMATIC ILMA
2010 European Intermediate Champion

PESS FARM GOLDWYN NEVIL 2010 European Junior Champion

PESS FARM GOLDWYN NEVIL
2010 European Junior Champion

PEPITA 2010 Junior Champion & Grand Champion Red

PEPITA
2010 Junior Champion & Grand Champion Red

Festive events and a specialist trade fair

The focus of attention of the 5,000‐plus visitors from Switzerland and the whole of Europe will, of course, be the championship itself, which will be held in the ring.  However, other aspects of breeding will also be presented to the public during the two days of the event.  A competitive showing exclusively for young breeders, a cattle auction and two gala evenings will foster relations between the delegations within a pleasant and festive atmosphere, while a specialist trade fair will bring together commercial exhibitors from areas relating to breeding and agriculture, thereby promoting friendly, professional contacts between the various Swiss and European participants.

No EXPO Bulle in 2013

The organizers of EXPO Bulle have declared that due to the exceptional circumstances, the show will miss a year in 2013.  Event manager Jean‐Charles Philipona stressed that: “This was a difficult decision to take because breeders are very attached to EXPO Bulle.  However, we know what an event like the European Championship represents in terms of human and financial resources.  Since the majority of our partners are involved in both events, we will work closely with the federations and pool our strength.  Holding the European Championship is an exceptional occurrence that merited an exceptional decision.” EXPO Bulle, which celebrated its 40th anniversary last year, nevertheless confirms that this year’s show will not go ahead as planned on 24 and 25 March 2013.

The Bullvine Bottom Line

While maybe not as well known to many North American breeders, the All-European Championship is certainly one of the best exhibitions of dairy cattle in the world.  With past winners who could walk on the colored shavings in North America and the potential for this year’s winner to give the great RF Goldwyn Hailey a run for her money, Fribourg 2013 is certainly going to be an event many breeders should be watching with a careful eye.

Check out the following team pre-selections:


 

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GERMAN PRE-SELECTION FOR EUROPEAN SHOW

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