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Who Really Has The Best Dairy Cattle Genetics In The World?

The amount of bragging and arguing that goes on among breeders about what country has the best genetics in the world is insane.  Because  many have no actual facts to back up their opinion, the Bullvine decided to take a closer look and see just who does have the best genetics in the world. We took a look at the top 50 proven and top 50 genomic sires (where possible) in each of the major north American  indexes (TPI, NM%, LPI, PTAT and Conf) to see just what countries have the top bulls on each. We used north American indexes since all other indexes did not publicly provide MACE lists for use to do an accurate evaluation. The following is what we found.


tpi proven sires

tpi genomic sires

When it comes to TPI, it’s not surprising that the US dominates both the proven and genomic sire lists.  Given that TPI is a US based index, it’s only natural that they would have such a large proportion of the list.  What is interesting about these results is that Canada does have 14% of the top genomic sires.  Maybe a sign that Canadians are starting to put more attention into TPI and are adjusting their breeding programs so that they can achieve high ranking TPI animals.


NM$ proven sires

NM$ Genomic Sires

Since young sire information between countries is not readily available, its not surprising the we have mostly US sires on the genomic lists.  What is interesting about these results is that the Nordic countries have 22% of the top proven sires for NM$.  This is a direct result of their heavy focus on health and fertility and thus leading the way in genetic progress in these areas (Read more:  What the experts will tell you about who is winning the genetic improvement race).


ptat proven

ptat genomic sires

When it comes to type it’s not surprising that Canada makes its strongest showing in this area. Years of intense breeding for this trait have led to Canada having a larger market share in this area.  What is also interesting is the diversity of countries that make the top proven sire list.


lpi proven sires

lpi genomic sires

Almost shockingly there are no Canadian bred proven sires in the top 50 LPI sires in the world.  Given that LPI is Canada’s national index you would think there would be at least a few.  While the genomic lists do have 22% Canadian bred sires, it shows that in the recent past Canadian’s have been lagging behind other countries.


conf proven sires

conf genomic sires

One area that has always been a great strength is the Canada’s ability to breed great type.  While they certainly have their largest market share in this area.  It is interesting to note that the Canada does have more of the top proven and genomic conformation sires in the world.

The Bullvine Bottom Line

While there is no question that the US has the largest  population of dairy breeders in the world, and hence they should have the largest market share, what is surprising is how they have so much of the world’s top genetics.   Well beyond just the size of their population base, the US is the world leader in producing top Holstein sires.

For complete genetic evaluations from around the world click here.


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