International Intrigue: The World Will Be Watching the 5th Edition at Ferme Blondin

If you’re looking for the excitement of genetic discovery or want to keep updated on the mystery of what is the best and you are hoping to find it all rolled up in a wonderfully hospitable event … you need to make your way to St. Placide, Quebec for the International Intrigue Sale 2013 Edition hosted by Ferme Blondin on July 27, 2013. This could be one time where delving into Intrigue may cost you money but could also put you further ahead as you build your herd of top genetics, genomics and cow families.

According to Simon Lalande there will be something for everyone.

International-Intrigue-2013_web750[1]“The sale will be offering the best of all worlds, high genomics heifers, big time show cows and heifers and well-known cow families.  Kim Cote enthusiastically agrees. “Jeff, Ed, Tim and Simon had done an amazing job when taking consignments to assure that it was only the best!!!  People that attend the sale can expect an amazing line-up of cattle and an opportunity to visit with other Holstein breeders with the hospitality going on from Friday afternoon to late Saturday night.  We want that everyone attending the sale have a great time and relax with good friends!”  Of course there will be the usual amount of exacting attention paid to every detail from the catalog to extensive advertising.  Everything pulls together to make this a must-attend event where you can see some of the top animals in the world and have a lot of fun at the same time.

If enthusiasm is any indication, then the 5th Intrigue sale is already headed for success.

With their customers’ best interests in mind, some changes have been incorporated into this sale. “The program of the sale will be similar to the last sale but we will have more live animals selling this time and less choices.  For Ferme Blondin, it is important to have something for every kind of breeder.  “We want everyone to find what they like in the sale and have the chance to bid and buy one whatever their budget is.  In the future, we want to keep doing lower profile sales at our farm so we don’t want to scare our customers with only high prices. “

Ms Pride Gold Invite 761 VG-89-CAN 3yr

Ms Pride Gold Invite 761 VG-89-CAN 3yr
Res. Intermediate Champion Quebec Spring Show ’12
Grand dam is the dam to the very popular bull Regancrest AltaIOTA!
Family with al lot of proven bulls like Durham, Dundee, Damion, Mac, Million and many more!
Goes back on the legendary brood Cow Snow-N Denises Dellia EX-95
3 daughters selling in the sale

Obviously “International Intrigue” is good for cattle buyers but it has proven benefits for the hosts such as Ferme Blondin too.

“Hosting the Intrigue sale the first time was really good for us because it brought us a lot of people that never had the chance before to come and visit the farm.  We made a lot of new contacts in the business and a lot of new friends!” Kim Côté has encouraging words for future hosts, “If someone has the potential of hosting one of the future sales, they should go ahead!  It has been a pleasure for us to work with Jeff, Ed and Tim.  They are great people that all share the same passion: cows!


Ronbeth Alexander Pearl (Alexander)
1st place Senior 2 Year Old Maxville
Sells as lot 21

Ferme Blondin will be selling 50 head in the sale

With 2/3 that are milking cows, Kim highlights some of the lots. “We will be offering some of our best show cows, Pearl (1st Sr 2 Yr Old at Maxville), Lulabelle 1st Jr 3Y old at Maxville) and three daughters of Invite (Grand at Maxville).  We will also be offering some of our best genomic calves (a choice of 2nd and 3rd highest Uno daughters from Apple and the #1 Phoenix in Canada from the Smithden Allen Allison family).  The Barbie and Supra families will also be well represented with several family members selling.”

Polestar Goldwyn Lulabelle (Goldwyn) 1st place Junior 3 Year Old Maxville - See more at:  Read More at ©

Polestar Goldwyn Lulabelle VG-88-2YR
1st place Junior 3 Year Old Maxville
Sells as lot 14

Ed Fellers, co-owner of Butler and Fellers is super happy with the lineup for this Intrigue Sale.

So much so that he refuses to narrow his list of favorites. “I will say that we have 15-20 heifers and young cows that have the potential to contend or win at this year’s National Shows! We also have at least 6 high genomic heifers selling with over 2500 gTPI! Additionally, we have the #1 Polled RC female in the World selling, the highest and 2nd highest gTPI polled females ever to be offered at public auction, and several more breed leading flush age Red and RC polled offerings! Choices sell from the number 1 gLPI cow in the World and the number 2 gTPI cow in the World as well as from the #1 flush age polled female in the World!”  There is undoubtedly a favorite for every dairy breeder with a specific focus.  Two that stand out are MOM Kool who sells as Lot 1 and is the number 2 Protein cow in North America.  Aubry sells as Lot 5 with the potential to become a truly incredible Brood Cow….. And the list goes on!

Ms C-Haven Oman Kool (hd)

Ms C-Haven Oman Kool VG-87 VG-MS 2YR
Former #1 GTPI Man-O-Man daughter in the US
The 2nd highest Protein Cow in North America
Sells as lot 1

From the benchmark 5th year of the International Intrigue Sale we look back to where it all began.

Jeff Butler describes the process that got it all started. “Dallas Burton and Ed Fellers were still managing Burton Fellers Auctions and we had an extremely successful inaugural Parade of Perfection Sale in 2008.  After World Dairy Expo 2008, I talked with Ed about the Milk Source display etc. and how it would be great to have a sale at their farm.  So Ed and I went up there in October 2008 and booked the sale for summer 2009. Milk Source did a fantastic job. We got some great consignments and had one of the best sales ever!” After that first sale at Milk Source, International Intrigue continued its momentum at Mapelwood in Ontario, Blondin in Quebec, Butlerview and Blondin again this year.  Here’s an opportunity to mark your forward calendar because Jeff tells us, “The 2014 International Intrigue sale is currently scheduled to be at Milk Source again!”

Regancrest S Chassity EX-92 EEEVE DOM

Regancrest S Chassity EX-92 EEEVE DOM
Her Goldwyn daughter Cash is one of the hottest young cows in the world, she sold for $205,000 and has progeny testing way above parent average!
Dam of Gold Chip…one of the most popular genomic sires in the World & Mr Chassity Colt 45-ET *RC, *PO, +2248 GTPI, the #1 RC Polled Bull in the World, available through Jetstream Genetics!

Tales of Intrigue

Every International Intrigue Sale has recorded sales of terrific animals – both type and genomic. With the growing records, there are numerous examples to prove that the excitement doesn’t end when the sale is over. Jeff Butler provides a few highlights to illustrate the continuing impact of those carefully chosen lots. “In 2009, Chassity and her offspring/pregnancies sold for $1.5M.  This was just prior to the genomic era.  Gold Chip was one of the pregnancies that sold with her.  Dubeau Dundee Hezbollah also sold that day and was Intermediate Champion at Madison that same year.  Rubens Marla also sold that day and was Grand Champion Red and White Cow at Madison 2 months later.  In 2011 Licorice sold.  In 2012 Camomile, Monique, and Gold Barbara sold.”

Cookview Goldwyn Monique EX-92 3yr EX-95 MS

Cookview Goldwyn Monique EX-92 3yr EX-95 MS
All-Canadian & Unanimous All-American Senior 3 Year Old 2012
1st Senior 3 Year Old, Intermediate Champion & HM Grand Champion Royal Winter Fair 2012
1st Senior 3 Year Old, Intermediate & Reserve Grand Champion WDE 2012
Sold in last years sale

The Bullvine Bottom Line

History confirms that International Intrigue Sale animals have gone on to become breed leaders and produce some of the best genomic offspring the breed has ever seen.  Likewise the type animals have proven their worth as Champions and All Americans and All Canadians.  Take the opportunity to be at Blondin on July 27th.  Not only could you buy a top animal with the obvious benefit to your breeding program but you will have the fun of sharing the excitement with the best marketers in the Holstein industry.

Click here for more details about the International Intrigue Sale 2013 Edition hosted by Ferme Blondin

What Wayne Gretzky and Sidney Crosby taught me about Dairy Cattle Marketing

Not since Wayne Gretzky ripped Leaf fan’s hearts out in game 6 of the 1993 playoffs have they felt such pain as they did on Sunday night after having a 3 goal lead on Boston with just over 10 minutes to play.  (FYI I had to forgive Gretzky as I married his cousin and it would cause bad in-law relations).  Making Leaf fans more prime for pain was the fact that they have not been in the playoffs for the past 9 years.  After watching what had to be one of the worst collapses in hockey history, I got to thinking about what it took to be great.  What I came up with is that truly great players like Gretzky and Crosby don’t only make themselves look great but they also make the players around them that much better.  Just like great cattle investments don’t only make themselves profitable but also help the animals around them  more profitable.

Lessons from Sydney Crosby

sidney-crosby-alex-ovechkin-game-7[1]Due to the lockout of 2004-2005, Sidney Crosby and Alexander Ovechkin both entered the NHL in the same year.  At the time there was great debate about who was going to be the better player.  Since then the stats would tell you that Ovechkin has been the better investment.  He has 371 goals, 365 assists for 735 points, whereas Crosby has had 238 goals, 427 assists for 665 points.  However, sometimes numbers don’t tell the whole story.  Even though Ovechkin has won more individual awards (Rookie of the Year, 2x NHL goal scoring leader, 2x most valuable player, vs. 1 MVP and 1 scoring title for Crosby),  ask any NHL player which one is better and they would tell you that Crosby is by far.  That is because Crosby not only puts up numbers himself but he also makes the players around him raise their level of play. For example, before playing on a line with Crosby, Chris Kunitz highest goal total was 26 in an 82 game season. This year, playing with Crosby he had 22 in the shortened 48 game season. That is an almost  50% increase.  This outstanding ability to inspire  others around him has resulted in Crosby having played more playoff games than Ovechkin and has already won a Stanley Cup in his career.

When I got to thinking about how the truly great ones not only make themselves look great they also make the others around them better, it reminded me of a comment that Jeff Butler of Butlerview made in an interview we did with him just before Royal last year (Read more: Exciting Times for Butlerview).   In the article Jeff say’s “type brings the foot traffic to the farm, but genomics and pedigree get them buying.” This further reminded me of  an article I had written early this year about the great RF Goldwyn Hailey and how she  herself may not be a great return on investment (Read more: RF Goldwyn Hailey: Cash Cow or Cash Hog?).  While there is no question that Hailey’s  own numbers alone are  not the highest ROI in the market today, if you look at it from a marketing investment she and other great show cows could be the wisest marketing investment you could ever make.  Now I am not talking buy these animals for the over 1 million dollar mark.  But as Jeff says nothing drives traffic to your door like a great show cow.  Something Jeff should know considering he owns 2 of the top 5 cult following cows in the world today (R-E-W Happy Go Lucky and Cookview Goldwyn Monique).



The big thing you need to remember and as Jeff pointed out in our article is that you need the supporting cast in your herd to help convert that traffic into revenue.  For Butlerview that means animals like Regancrest S Chassity, Regancrest G Brocade and De-Su 199 Chart Topper.  These high genomic animals from big name pedigrees are the ones that help Butlerview’s big investment in show cattle pay dividends.  Key to any of this is the fact that all animals need to be good embryo producers or you might as well kiss your money goodbye (Read more: What Comes First the Chicken or the Egg?).

Lessons from Wayne Gretzky

The great hockey player  to every play the game, Wayne Gretzky, always said don’t go to where the puck is but rather, see where the puck is going and go there.  As we highlighted in our article about the marketing of Glen Drummond Aero Flower and DES-Y-GEN PLANET SILK, you need to see or even predict where the marketing is heading and make sure your marketing and breeding goals are in alignment with that (Read more: Marketing Lessons From Glen Drummond Aero Flower).  As the dairy industry develops, efficient milk production that fills the consumers’ needs will gain greater importance. National indexes are always being adjusted to reflect the marketplace.  In Canada it will not be long before greater weighting will be placed on health and fertility traits, this means you should already be breeding for this today so that your ahead of the curve when these changes occur.  Remember that it’s not only about how much milk, or how many show winning daughters a sire produces, but it’s also important to breed to a bottom line that is consumer friendly. It’s only a matter of time before the national indexes reflect this even more.


David Dyment has kept Planet Silk ahead of the curve by combining both high index, Red Factor and polled in one complete package. Her sons and daughters dominate the top of the Red and the RC list (GTPI). Her son DYMENTHOLM S SYMPATICO is one of the highest GTPI and GLPI active bulls in the breed.

The Bullvine Bottom Line

Headliners will get you attention, but their ability to make the others around you shine as well will be what makes you the money.  Sidney Crosby is a great player, but it’s the ability to lift up the others around him better that  wins the Stanley Cup.  The same was true for Wayne Gretzky.  It wasn’t just his own ability to dominate a game that created the opportunity for Gretzky to appear in 6 Stanley Cup finals, winning four of them.  It was his ability to see the play developing and make his team around him shine too that did it.  Until players like Ovechkin learn this key lesson he will never win a cup.  The same is true when you are designing your genetic marketing program.  Until you learn just how you are going to use your headliners to maximize the other genetic stars in your herd and look 3+ years down road and see where the market is heading, you are never going to generate  as much return on your investment as you could.



To learn how to get your farm on Facebook download this free guide.



Exciting Times for Butlerview

The dairy cattle business is built by people who have the passion and persistence to bring their dreams to reality such as Butlerview Farm of Chebanse, Illinois. Butlerview, which is owned and operated by Jim and Jeff Butler and their mom Joyce, is a state of the art facility, where brood cows and show animals are on display at all times in one location. It is the realization of a family dream based on their passion for cattle.

Cookview Goldwyn Monique EX-92 EX-95 MS Reserve Grand Champion, Intermediate Champion, 1st Sr 3-Year-Old/Best Udder Owned with Joe & Amber Price

Cookview Goldwyn Monique EX-92 EX-95 MS
Reserve Grand Champion, Intermediate Champion, 1st Sr 3-Year-Old/Best Udder
Owned with Joe & Amber Price

Field of Dreams Facility

The original facility from the 1970s has undergone major renovations, with utmost attention to cow management, comfort and presentation.  From hutches, through the heifer facility, to the box stall barn, every detail has been carefully considered to provide the best environment and allow the animals to reach their full potential.  Separate housing for bulls and complete federally approved flushing facilities round out this field of dreams cattle genetics business.


Dam of Gold Chip GTPI+2450 – #2 Genomic Sire 4/11
Her daughter, Goldwyn Cash GTPI+2324 is the #1 GTPI Goldwyn of the Breed 4/11

Build It and They Will Come

Years of experience in sales and marketing and a passion for cattle have come together in this start to finish home for the production and marketing of elite dairy genetics. Jeff admits that attracting clients can be a two step process. “Type brings the foot traffic to the farm.  But genomics and pedigree get them buying.”

R-E-W Happy Go Lucky-ET HM Intermediate Champion, 1st Milking Yearling/Best Udder WDE 2012

R-E-W Happy Go Lucky-ET
HM Intermediate Champion, 1st Milking Yearling/Best Udder WDE 2012

Growing Pains: Challenges and Opportunities

Jeff acknowledges the challenges they face. “Like most businesses that are going through rapid expansion, there are certainly growing pains along the way.” The logistics alone require constant attention to detail.” We need to turn our animals 2.5 times per year for proper facility utilization.  That means keeping most newborn animals no more than 4-6 months.  This means we have to plan what sales animals are going to, contact people that have purchased 1st choices from us and get them to pick their animals, decide what bulls studs the qualified males will go to and arrange all of the proper testing.”


Goldwyn daughter of 2012 Golden Dam Finalist REGANCREST-PR BARBIE
Daughters currently at Butlerview by Supersonic, Bookem, Shamrock (GTPI +2443), Snowman, Greatest (GTPI +2358), Large (PTAT +4.13), Epic & Numero Uno

Butlerview Success Formula: People, Talent and Time Off

Even though the vision is quite large the success formula is quite simple explains Jeff. “We try to have the best employees we can find because they are the most important asset we have. We teach them how we want things done and then let them do their jobs without micromanaging them.” He adds that, “It is important to make sure that employees get some time off to prevent burnout in this type of environment.”

BVK Atwood Arianna-ET VG-89 1st Jr 2-Year-Old/B&O/Best Udder WDE 2012 Owned with Frank & Diane Borba

BVK Atwood Arianna-ET VG-89
1st Jr 2-Year-Old/B&O/Best Udder WDE 2012
Owned with Frank & Diane Borba

Marketing Strategy says “No!” to the Familiar and “Hello Wow Factor!”

The environment Jeff is referring to is the one where every animal and client benefits from the facilities and expertise offered by Butlerview Farm, Jetstream Genetics and Butler Fellers Auctions.  These are the three pillars of success according to Jeff. “I think what helps the success of Butlerview is that there are synergies between having the farm and having the auction company in Butler-Fellers to market the animals.” He points to the advantages. “This allows us to have a pulse and relationships with the buyers and sellers in the marketplace.” Each auction is an event in and of itself but Jeff doesn’t leave out the additional benefit of having the Jetstream bull stud. “This provides another avenue to market some of our bulls.”

Ms Atlees Shottle Aubry VG-88 EX-MS

Ms Atlees Shottle Aubry VG-88 EX-MS
Full sister to AFTERSHOCK

Buyers Come Through the Door for Type but Stay for Genomics and Pedigree 

A keen observer of the marketplace, Jeff homes in on what is most important to clients. “For show cows the most important thing I look for is the udder.  The other things I look for are style and show appeal, width of rump, openness and angularity, functional feet and legs and great front ends, with smooth blending of shoulders and long necks extending upward out of the shoulder. If they have all of that, then I look at size and length of body to make sure they are big enough.”  On the genomic side he has priorities as well. “For genomic animals, I look at three things in order: 1 Cow families and maternal lines; 2. Conformation of the individual; 3. GTPI score. Milk, fat, protein and high Type are the most important numbers that I look at. When trying to market offspring from them, I think those are the most important characteristics that the majority of our customer base looks at.”

RockyMountain Talent Lisorice EX-95 All-Canadian 2012 & 2011 All-American 2011

RockyMountain Talent Lisorice EX-95
All-Canadian 2012 & 2011
All-American 2011

Butlerview Seeks to Provide Exclusive Genetics

The team at Butlerview never loses sight of the fact that the goal is to be a world leader in top-ranked genomic and breed-defining type sires. “For type and show cows, we are using Gold Chip, Atwood, Brokaw, Sid, Colt 45 and Numero Uno because we really like the calves.  We anticipate using Licorice’s 2 sons that will be coming out in early 2013 at Jetstream Genetics: a red Destry son and a RC Goldwyn Son.” He outlines how they are approaching the genomic sires. “For genomic sires we are using Cashcoin, Cashmoney, Colt .45, Numero Uno, Supersire and have also ordered some Liquid Gold semen that we will be using.”


2nd Jr. 2-Yr-Old World Dairy Expo 2009
Res. All-American Jr. 2-Yr-Old 2009
Full Sister to Atwood & maternal sister to Aftershock

World Vision for Butlerview

These are exciting times to be in the dairy breeding business and Jeff offers this opinion. “Probably the two biggest game changers have been the ability to IVF animals which allowed a much quicker and more profitable ROI on the purchase of elite animals and then the invention of genomic testing which provides a tremendous tool for identifying the elite animals.”  He looks ahead to an exciting future with three important developments: “I see the value of high genomic males increasing for farmers as they move closer to 2013, when they will be able to test their own bulls. I see high genomic males topping public auctions much like high genomic females currently do.  I see the price of early semen from the high genomic bulls increasing rapidly in price, which will greatly benefit farmers.”

Ms Dundee Belinda-ET EX-94 EX-94 MS 3rd 5-Year-Old/1st Bred & Owned

Ms Dundee Belinda-ET EX-94 EX-94 MS
3rd 5-Year-Old/1st Bred & Owned at 2012 World Dairy Expo

Butlerview Shares Advice With Young Breeders

Jeff’s passion for the industry extends to everyone who shares his enthusiasm and particularly those just starting out. “When it comes to acquiring animals, I would encourage young breeders to look very closely at the maternal line.” His reason is based on years of experience.” It is much easier to market an animal when people around the world recognize the cow family that you are trying to market from.”

Micheret Alexandra Sid VG-89 5th 4-Year-Old WDE 2012

Micheret Alexandra Sid VG-89
5th 4-Year-Old WDE 2012

Innovation Changes Butlerview. Butlerview Innovates Change

If you stand still as the industry changes, eventually you will be left behind.  Through his new endeavours and keen eye for analysis Jeff talks about how modern marketing is based on engaging with the customer. He advises, “I would use the social media such as Facebook, print media and websites to get your message across to people.” He adds. “Today’s market is truly a global market.  You have to design messages that will reach and appeal to people all around the world.”

Peirstein Goldwyn Frisou EX-94 7th 5-Year-Old WDE 2012 Owned with Frank & Diane Borba

Peirstein Goldwyn Frisou EX-94
7th 5-Year-Old WDE 2012
Owned with Frank & Diane Borba

Bullvine Bottom Line

As Butlerview moves toward an exciting future Jeff is enthusiastic. “There are unlimited possibilities ahead.”  They look forward to working to grow their own business and those of their clients.

REGANCREST S CHASSITY – 2012 Golden Dam Finalist

When REGANCREST S CHASSITY EX-92-4YR-USA DOM caught the eye of Scott Courtney and he put her on his wish list that`s when this timely story began. As fate would have it, he later was working a sale where she was selling and made the first timely decision to partner on her purchase.  During his ownership he reports that Chassity was not only was a great animal to work with but she flushed well and continued to attract significant attention and new owners Ernie Kueffner and David Dyment.  More flushes followed to such bulls as Million, Alexander, Planet, Sanchez and Atwood.  By the time the International Intrigue Sale came along in August 2009 the foundation for success had been laid.  The Chassity package sold in 2009 for 1.5 million dollars and the timing was exactly right for Chassity to make money and make history.  Her sale price was capturing the headlines the same year that genomics was revolutionizing the breeding scene.  Genomics and Chassity became synonymous with success for Chassity`s current owners The Chassity Syndicate LLC of Illinois.




Chassity Checks Out From Family Line to Topline

Like many great cows Chassity pulls it all together.  Jeff Butler, a member of the Chassity Syndicate, describes her in winning terms,” She’s a big cow standing 63 inches, with a wide rump, hard top, a wide chest, and walks up hill. And of course she has a beautiful udder. “This comes naturally when you consider that Chassity is a sixth generation Excellent from the renowned Barbie family. Looking back there is her Granddam Barbie EX92.  Then her dam Champion Cinderella EX92.  Then Chassity herself EX92.  Chassity has a full sister Celebrity VG89, owned in Canada, who is 2* Brood Cow and a bull dam.



Chassity’s Records Are First Class

Chassity was VG 88 as a two year old and then went EX 92. She was the number 4 Shottle in the United States and #13 cow with CTPI of 2317. She had another headlining year in 2011, when she tied with Ralma Christmas Fudge for Global Cow of the Year.  She puts up outstanding numbers with 4-00 (305d) 17,513 4.5F 3.2P.

REGANCREST-PR BARBIE EX-92-7YR-USA DOM GMD 3* - 2nd dam of Chassity

REGANCREST-PR BARBIE EX-92-7YR-USA DOM GMD 3* – 2nd dam of Chassity

Chassity Produces in the Pail and at the Bank

Chassity’s list of offspring reads like a healthy bank statement.  From Goldwyn, she produced Gold Chip and Goldwyn Cash. Cash went on to make Cashmoney, Cashcoin, Cash-O, and Casher!  With these offspring, Chassity is definitely in the money and, while she`s unforgettable for the exceptional 1.5 million dollar sale price at Intrigue in Aug. 2009, her financial story didn`t stop there.  In the Destination Vegas Sale, in December of the same year, her daughter Chassity Goldwyn Cash was the world’s top-selling individual, being purchased for $205,000.   At the World Classic sale in Madison a Planet daughter, MS Courtlane UR-S Candy VG85, sold to Regancrest.  Earlier in the summer a Domain granddaughter of Chassity, sold for a high price through the Skyline Holstein sale in Germany. She sold to Koepon. Chassity’s name continues to be a guaranteed bank machine at sales worldwide.

MS CHASSITY GOLDWYN CASH VG-87-2YR-CAN - daugher of Chassity

MS CHASSITY GOLDWYN CASH VG-87-2YR-CAN – daughter of Chassity

Chassity`s Daughters Dominate

As of September 2012 Chassity has 63 daughters from 24 different sires setting new records and earning breed leading numbers of their own, especially for type. For her current owners “the largest demand these days is driven by the progeny of Chassity’s Goldwyn daughter Cash and Chassity`s Snowman Daughters.” Courtlane UR Chassity, the 8th generation EX was Chassity’s first EX daughter! She is the dam of Cameron +2356 GTPI and other sons in A.I. MS Chassity PLN Chaching is Chassity’s Planet daughter  GLPI +2282, VG86 2yrs 2-05 (305D) 14,115kg 3.6F 3.1P. This cow also has sons going into AI. Her daughter MS Chassity Goldwyn Cash VG87 2yr GLPI +2277 has a record of 2-04 (305D) 15,491kg milk, 4.1F and 3.2P.  She has two Observer sons owned by Jetstream Genetics – Cash Money GLPI +3385 and Cash Coin GTPI +2495. In the 2012 World Classic Sale in Madison a first choice female lot from Cash sold for $39,000. Chassity`s four highest genomic tested daughters are sired by Snowman: Snow Carrie DGV +3142 DGV LPI +3142; Snowman Clea GLPI +3021; Snow Caitlyn GLPI +2922 and Snow Corissa GLPI +2811. In cattle breeding, it takes progeny to continue making money and at Butlerview they report that “Chassity is a great embryo producer and so are her daughters”

Chassity’s Sons are Super

Chassity has numerous sons in A.I. In September her 39 sons are sired by 14 different sires. MR Chassity Gold Chip (Goldwyn X Chassity) was the No. 2 genomic sire in the US in 2010. His GTPI was 2414 and his PTAT was +4.47.  There are full brothers Calvin (Select Sires) and Charlie (Semex). MR Chassity Coach with 2312 GTPI and 3.00 PTAT is the highest of Chassity’s Planet sons. Another top son, MR Chassity Carson (Observer x Chassity) has a GTPI +2225 (08/12). In December 2011, MR Chassity GW Casino (Goldwyn X Chassity) GLPI was +2744 and his CONF +14. Colt 45 (Colt P-Red X Chassity) is the result of demand for red and polled, so they got a red carrier polled. Colt’s GTPI is +2364 Dec of 2011. His PTAT is +3.78 and his PL is +5.1.

IMPACT – Chassity Raises Conformation

Chassity shines for her ability to introduce type to the population and is used worldwide. This Golden Dam nomination has proven herself from all angles!  According to the Chassity Syndicate, “She makes high GTPI bulls that make excellent calves.  Along with making high GTPI and great bulls, her daughters and grand-daughters are making a large impact on the breed.  Chassity is from a proven cow family and Chassity herself is a proven transmitter!”

Do you think Chassity deserves to win our 2012 Golden Dam Contest?  Let us know. Your vote counts.


A Wake-up Call to All A.I. Companies

Lately, there has been a great deal of discussion regarding March 2013 when dairy breeders will be able to genomically test their own bulls.  (Read – How Genomics Is Killing the Dairy Industry)  One thing for sure is that it is forcing many Artificial Insemination companies to re-think their corporate strategy.

Probably one of the greatest areas for executives at the AI companies to look at for examples on how to position their companies is the retail industry.  There are many similarities between A.I. and retail, especially considering the need for product differentiation as well as being a service organization.  Three great retail examples to look at are Wal-Mart, Apple, and Amazon.


If you look at the large artificial insemination companies, you can already see that many of them are heading toward the Wal-Mart model, where they try to offer the highest quality product at “always low prices.”  Companies like Alta Genetics, ABS Global, Accelerated, and CRI have identified the largest portion of the marketplace, the commercial producer.  This is where they can sell the highest volume semen and maximize profit not through the semen prices they charge but rather through how efficiently they can operate.

Similar to the Wal-Mart, one stop shopping model, many of these A.I. organizations now try to be a complete solution to their customers offering such services as, herd health, feed & nutrition in addition to their genetic and reproductive services.

When it comes to their genetic offerings, the key here is that they are selling shelf space.  No longer is it as much about the product they are selling, as it is about the complete package they are trying to offer to the commercial breeder.  That means that they are looking to provide  a consistent product rather than seeking  to have the #1 TPI or LPI sire.  Therefore, they do not have to go out and source the top sires but, rather, they need to provide consistent reliable genetics that can help advance their commercial partner herds.  This means they will not have to get as aggressive on their lease deals and can still focus on their efficiencies and volumes as opposed to the ultra-aggressive sourcing of top gPA TPI and gPA LPI sires.

Once the world’s most dominating retail entity, there is no question that the Wal-Mart model works, Although  it was once believed that only one company could survive and thrive in the ultra-competitive big box store world.  The recent performance of companies like Target does hold out some hope for the many A.I. companies looking to battle for this large market segment.


In  contrast to the Wal-Mart model is Apple.  The most admired company in the world has built its market position through developing, marketing and direct selling their own unique product to what most would consider a niche market.  They key part to this model is having a very clear vision who your marketplace is and developing an extremely differentiated product in the eyes of their customers. A.I. companies that seem to be emulating this model are GenerVations with their work with the Lylehaven Lila Z and Wabash-Way Evett families, JetStream Genetics with their work with Regancrest  S Chassity, and Select Sires through their Aggressive Reproductive Technologies (ART) program, though to a much larger audience that the first two (Read – Select Sires vs Semex: A contrast in Cooperatives).

Similar to how Apple has received widespread criticism for some of their own business practices, companies like Select Sires have received criticism for owning females (Read –Should A.I. Companies Own Females ). Though as the Apple model demonstrates you need to have a distinctive product in order to survive. The biggest thing that all three of these companies have learned is that, in order to compete in this ultra-competitive marketplace, they need to cost effectively source their genetics.  That means producing their own sires and accelerating their rate of genetic advancement so that they can have a product that is unique in the marketplace. (Read – The Genomic Advancement Rate – The Battle for Genetic Supremacy)

There are two main lessons I think many of these A.I. companies can learn.  First always be innovative and at the front of the marketplace.  If you are not pushing the front end of product development/sire sampling, you will fall behind your competitors and get lost in no man’s land.  The second lesson is that you have to control the license to your product.  Apple has never allowed other companies to come in and license their product.  They also did not create the iPhone or iPad and then the next day let their competitors take their products and designs and create their own versions knock off versions.  Companies that did allow this to happen, like Microsoft, have developed much larger market share, but have fallen on financial challenges. For A.I. companies that means you need to control your young sire sampling so that you have the next generation of genetics before your competitors do.  While some would say that is not fair, in order for these companies to compete they have no option but to do so.  While having negative sentiment in a small segment of  the marketplace is not ideal, the risk of not having a differentiated product is a much bigger gamble.

More recently, I have seen the emergence of online semen retailers akin to the model.  Companies like DairyBullsOnline in North America and Dairy Daughters in the UK, are able to compete not on their size and scale, or their own distinctive product (though DairyBullsOnline does have a strong segment in the polled and red and white market) but rather through their efficiencies.  These companies do not have large facilities with great numbers of staff, but rather they are extremely efficient in their operations and source their product direct from breeders or smaller A.I. organizations.  Leveraging technology both on the web as well as for shipping semen internationally these companies are able to operate at much higher efficiency, passing benefits back to the producers and the breeders they source their genetics from.  Despite what they lack in market share, they are able to attract unique genetics through offering seed stock breeders a much higher royalty percentage.

The interesting part about this model is that Amazon was able to stay competitive and fight off many competitors by developing private labels and exclusive marketing arrangements, including being the online e-tailer for many large retail companies.  As many of the organizations are forced to get more efficient will they be able to reduce costs and develop their own platforms that will take away the advantage these companies have?  You can already see it in the retail world with traditional companies like Wal-Mart and Best Buy committing significant resources to their web properties.

The Bullvine Bottom Line

The artificial insemination world is changing very rapidly.  While many companies have already identified what part of the market segment they are going to try to occupy, others seem to be taking a sit and wait approach.  The problem is, if they have not already identified whether they are going to be a Wal-Mart, Apple, or Amazon, it is too late, as many of the other companies already have a significant head start.

REGANCREST-PR BARBIE – 2012 Golden Dam Finalist

REGANCREST-PR BARBIE is often referred to as the premier brood cow in the Holstein world for type. Barbie and three of her daughters have all topped the USA Cow PTAT list. As a result, many descendants have brought high prices at public auction and in private treaty sales. Barbie spent her entire career under the ownership of her breeder, Regancrest Holsteins in Iowa, but her descendants have traveled the world.



Her Pedigree is an Alignment of Stars

Born in 2001, Barbie brought together the two main cow families at Regancrest. Her sire Durham, EX90 and Gold Metal, was known for siring udders and show cows. He was the very best son of the great SNOW-N DENISES DELLIA EX-95-2E-USA GMD DOM 5* that Regancrest also brought to fame. On her dam’s side, Barbie is the eighth generation of Regancrest breeding, which started from the Regan purchased cow ZUBES ORMSBY FAYNE EX90. Barbie’s dam, REGANCREST JUROR BRINA, like Barbie scored EX92 and earned GMD status. In fact Barbie was the fifth generation of Excellents with the Regancrest prefix. Her sire stack is Durham x Juror x Aerostar x Chief Mark x Board Chairman. All well-known and well-respected sires.

Barbie’s dam, Brina, EX92 and GMD, made records to 15,772 kg milk 3.6%F and 3.0%P at 4yrs of age.  As well, Brina had eight other Durham daughters including Bliss VG89 (2yrs), Bianca EX92 3E and Bunny EX93, who crossed extremely well with Goldwyn.

Walkway Chief Mark appears three times in Barbie’s pedigree. Her third dam, REGANCREST MARK CHAIRMAN BEA EX-91-2E-USA GMD DOM, was sired by Chief Mark; her sire’s dam (Dellia) was Chief Mark’s very best daughter; and the dam of her maternal grandsire (Juror) was sired by Chief Mark.  With that much Chief Mark influence, it is relatively easy to see where her width, depth of rear rib, smoothly blending fore udder and boxcar rump came from.

Barbie Shone in Milking Form

Barbie calved at 2-06 and produced (305D) 12,120 kg milk 3.9%F 3.0%P and classified high VG. In 2004 she was nominated All-American Jr 3 Year Old after being Intermediate and Reserve Grand at Minnesota State Fair and 5th at World Dairy Expo. She was raised in score to Ex92 after calving for a second time. In 2010 Global Cow of the Year Competition Barbie was nominated, was the Readers Choice and placed second. Barbie was #1 PTAT Cow. Her indexes were CTPI 2178 and PTAP 4.50. Her star shone brightly.

Barbie’s Progeny Excelled

REGANCREST G BROCADE EX-92-4YR-USA DOM - daughter of Barbie

REGANCREST G BROCADE EX-92-4YR-USA DOM – daughter of Barbie

When looking at Barbie’s progeny, it is not about the performance of Barbie’s more than 27 daughters it is about how many to feature. Shottle followed closely by Goldwyn were her best mates. All but one of her daughters have classified VG in their first lactations. By 2010 she had an unheard of 8 EX and 19 VG daughters. Three of her daughters have held the number one Cow PTAT position and at least eleven have made it to the top twenty-five PTAT Cow ranking.

Barbie’s Dolls Consistently Excel

REGANCREST G BRIZELDA EX-90-4YR-USA DOM - daughter of Barbie

REGANCREST G BRIZELDA EX-90-4YR-USA DOM – daughter of Barbie

REGANCREST G BEDAZZLE EX-91-5YR-USA DOM (Goldwyn) was the first Barbie daughter to be #1 PTAT Cow and was sold to Seimers Holsteins. REGANCREST CINDERELLA EX-92-2E-USA DOM GMD 4* (Champion) is the dam of many top daughters including REGANCREST S CHASSITY  EX-92-4YR-USA DOM the dam of numerous high genomic sons (Chassity is also a Golden Dam Nominee, she will be reported on soon in the Bullvine).  Chassity and her 14 offspring sold for $1.5. REGANCREST BREYA VG-88-3YR-USA DOM 1* (Shottle) was a former #1 PTAT Cow.  REGANCREST G BROCADE EX-92-4YR-USA DOM (Goldwyn), another former #1 PTAT Cow, sold with offspring for $900,000. REGANCREST BARBARA EX-92-4YR-USA DOM GMD (Shottle) made it to #31 CTPI Cow and was first 2yr old and Reserve Intermediate Champion at Iowa State Fair. REGANCREST G BRIZELDA EX-90-4YR-USA DOM (Goldwyn) produced 4-04 (305D) 14,864 kg milk 4.0F 3.4P.  REGANCREST MAC BIKAS VG-87-2YR-USA is the dam of the high genomic type sire MR ATWOOD BROKAW (Read- 7 Sires to Use In Order To Breed the Next World Dairy Expo Champion). Following on from these and other Barbie daughters there are numerous granddaughters that have topped lists and topped sales.

REGANCREST MAC BIKAS VG-87-2YR-USA - daughter of Barbie

REGANCREST MAC BIKAS VG-87-2YR-USA – daughter of Barbie

Barbie’s Sons Line Up Well Too

Five Barbie sons were proven in AI. REGANCREST S BRAXTON EX-95-5YR-USA (Shottle) was returned to active service by Select Sires based on his above average milk yield and superior type (PTAT 3.57) proofs. Baltimor (Shottle), Birk (Toystory) and Bonzai (Dundee) were all proven in Canada and all achieved Superior Type proofs. Mr Blackjack (Dundee) achieved PTAT 2.12 in the USA. There are many grandsons, great grandsons and great great grandsons now being used widely based on their genomic indexes. These sons make another long list of stars for Barbie, which includes Bradnick, Branson, Brokow, Cameron, Carson, Cashcoin, Cashmoney, Circuit, Colt 45, and Gold Chip.

Barbie Breeds True for Type.  She is the Holstein Breed Icon.

High rankings for PTAT are something Barbie and her descendants achieve with ease. With many grand and great granddaughters and grandsons are now receiving high genomic indexes for type, production and functional traits, it appears that Barbie’s legacy of great udders, excellent dairy strength, high classification scores and global demand will continue.

Do you think Barbie deserves to win our 2012 Golden Dam Contest?  Let us know. Your vote counts.


Golden Dam 2012 Finalists

Choosing the greatest dam in the world can be very challenging.  Choosing from over 100 nominations that our readers put forward can be almost impossible.  Nevertheless the Bullvine staff is up to the challenge and here are the finalists.

We need your help to assist our official judges, Roger Turner, Brian Leslie, Larry Schirm, and Allessandro Ravanelli.  Your vote counts.  You can win great prizes.  So get out and vote.  (For full contest details visit Golden Dam 2012)

So here, in alphabetical order, are the ten finalists:




When it comes to consistently putting out top genomic animals that have DGV’s that are higher than their parent averages, you cannot beat AMMON-PEACHEY SHAUNA.  The added bonus is not only do Shauna’s progeny top the GPA TPI lists but they also do well on the Canadian lists with 13 of her progeny over +3000 GPA LPI.  Shauna seems to be a cow that can do it all.  Her Robust son, Supersire is the #1 Net Merit sire and the #2 GPA TPI sire.  Again Shauna is a cow that flushes well and she has a great photo to market from!





In 2009 Elsa impressed breeders with her many daughters with remarkable production, type scores, breeding values, genomics and show results.  In 2010 her breeding achievements were equally as strong helping her earn the 2010 Global Cow of the Year Award.  Daughter success includes FG ESLA 12 VG-88 as a 2 yr. old and who is also dam of Broeks Bolton Else VG-86.  Of course you cannot forget her extremely popular son Flevo Genetics Snowman.





Being the dam of five class extra sons is no small accomplishment.  Nevertheless it is not a surprise for GILLETTE BLITZ 2ND WIND who is from the Braedale Gyspy Grand family that seems to do it with ease.  2nd Wind is also able to achieve it on the female side with 10 daughters over +2000 GLPI in her native Canada.  This six times number one LPI cow has been able to pass the torch to her daughter Gillette Bolton 2nd Sleep and her granddaughter Gillette S Planet 2nd Snooze.





Perk Rae is an 8th generation EX, and she is a Red Roxy.  On top of that she is polled.  What more could you ask for? She has a Durham daughter scored EX-92, as well as 8 VG daughters.  Perk Rae has been a popular contract cow with sons in AI and embryos exported around the world.  Perk Rae has seven EX sisters and her dam is an EX Rubens sister to Scientific Debutant Rae.  She is also the winner of the 2012 Red Impact Award from Holstein International.





The “million dollar cow” Lila Z has now produced 11 VG first lactation daughters. She was All-Canadian Jr Yearling, Jr. 2 YR, and HM Int. Champion at the 2004 Royal.  As well she was Int. Champion at Quebec Spring show in 2005. She was Reserve Grand three times:  at the Atlantic Spring Show in 2007, Ontario Summer Show 2007, and Autumn Opportunity Show in 2008.  Lila Z daughters include Goldwyn Lilac VG-89, Comestar Goldwyn Lala VG-87, the dams of Genervations Lexor and Gen-I-Beq Lavaman, former #1 and #2 genomic sires in Canada.





Daisy does it all.  She has high production, fitness, longevity and outstanding type.  This Excellent Durham granddaughter of Markwell Bstar Raven EX-95, who as a young cow made many waves at Madison, also transmits it all.  Numerous daughters, granddaughters and their sons distinguish themselves in the genomic rankings.  As a bull dam in 2010, Daisy had some fabulous results with the high-ranking O-Man sons Dakota (the Netherlands), Duke (Germany), and Osaka (Spain).  In 2012, Daisy’s first progeny sampled grandson, Danillo, provided an impressive sequel with top position in the Netherlands.





Atlee’s sons, with their super-high genomic numbers for type, the bulls Atwood (by Goldwyn), AltaAmazing (by Goldwyn), and Aftershock (by Shottle) are now as well known in the Holstein industry as any daughter-proven sires.  Atlee also has extreme conformation herself, winning reserve Int. champion at Madison in 2005.  She comes by it naturally with her grand dam being MS Kingstead Chief Adeen EX-94 (the full sister to World Champion Shoremar S Alicia EX-97).  Atlee’s daughters include Madison Junior Champion MS Atlees Roy Autumn VG-89, MS Atlees Gold Abigal VG-89, MS Atlees Goldwyn Ariel VG-89, who sold for $1.5 million, and the outstanding MS Atlees Shottle Aubry.





In addition to 7 EX daughters, Fudge is dam of the proven O-Man sons Cricket (Netherlands) and Focus (US), as well as the Goldwyn son Confirm (US).  Her grandsons include Gold Crown and Goldwyn Coach (from her O-Man daughter Christmas Cookie), Shottle Chariot (out of her EX Finely), and Twin-B Cassino, (a high genomic Ramos out of her Shottle daughter). Her show winning September daughter Crystal EX-93 had a full sister that is the dam of the Bolton mother of Sandy-Valley Colt P-Red.





REGANCREST PR BARBIE is the sixth generation of the Regancrest breeding program combining both the Dellias and the Brinas.  Eleven of her daughters are ranked in the top 25 of the American type index list.  Barbie’s offspring consistently generate top prices at international sales. In 2009, granddaughter and fellow finalist, Regancrest S Chassity EX 92, sold in a package with her offspring for $1.5 million. Barbie is the dam of 14 EX & 16 VG daughters and one of the breed’s leading type sires – Braxton EX-95.





Chassity was the world’s top selling cow of 2009, selling along with offspring for $1.5 million. In 2010, Chassity’s daughter Goldwyn Cash was the world’s top-selling individual, being purchased for $205,000.  The full brother to Cash, Mr. Chassity Gold Chip, has been the #2 GTPI sire in the US.  Sky-high genomic numbers on Chassity’s progeny, especially for type, help keep this granddaughter of Regancrest PR Barbie constantly in the news and helped her tie for the 2011 Global Cow of the Year.


The Bullvine Bottom Line

This year’s finalists represent a great cross section of the Holstein breed.  We have some of the greatest cow families in the history of the breed as well as some of the ones that are still starting to make their mark.  Which cow do you think has had the greatest impact?  Let us know. Your vote counts.

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