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World Jersey Cattle Bureau

Report of the Vice President, Europe

May 29, 2012

In General we are facing continuous progress for the Jersey breed in Europe. Focus on the efficiency of the dairy cow, green house gas emission, health and longevity, total economics and milk quotas being dropped in EU are all in favor of the Jerseys. The European Jersey Forum is very aware and preparing for higher demand and prices on Jerseys. The future looks bright!

In the following I have printed some reports from European Jersey populations:

 

Island of Jersey (James Godfrey)

The cattle population remains at approximately 5,000 head of Jerseys of which 3,100 are in milk.  Annual registrations during 2011 were 904 heifers with some 1,400 animals being classified and linear assessed.  It must be remembered that in the island 100% of the Jersey cattle are pedigree registered and 100% of these are linear assessed.  There has been an increase in the use of Aberdeen Angus bulls to produce a beef cross suitable for the local meat industry, although in total the number of these remains small.

The project to introduce international genetics continues to attract considerable interest with the proportion of the registered heifers sired by international bulls being 65%, it was 62% in 2010.  The Royal Jersey Agricultural & Horticultural Society will be reporting in more depth later this year on the impact of international genetics in terms of production and conformation once more of the first generation daughters have completed their lactations.  An early indication however is that the Premier Sires Championship Cup, a trophy awarded to the sire whose daughters attained the highest number of points awarded at the island shows, was won by an international bull for the first time, SHF Centurion Sultan.

The dairy co-operative in the island, Jersey dairy, is achieving some success in the production and export of a range of premium products and there are plans in preparation to allow milk producers to expand their production which is encouraging for the development of the Jersey brand.   

 

UK (Roger Trewhella)

In 2011 Jersey breeder numbers in the UK increased by 3% to over 650. During the year registrations declined by 7%, to 9192. The decline was mainly due to fewer registrations of older animals compared with 2010 when the Longley Farm dairy required all its suppliers to make their Jersey herds pedigree.

In January we organized the ‘Creating Our Golden Future’ conference, with the objective of harnessing more effort around the marketing of Jersey milk. We were delighted to have representatives form 12 milk processing organizations attend.

UK Jerseys is the lead partner in a PhD project at Reading University which will compare the chemical and physical properties of Jersey and Holstein milks for traditional cheddar cheese manufacture. The project is being 90% funded by three charities and Alvis Bros, a regional farmhouse cheese-maker, will trial the results at commercial scale.

Last month we have embarked upon a project that will provide young stock rearing guidelines. The first phase, looking at calf rearing, will be completed by a Jenny Ashton, a breeder’s daughter and Harper Adams University College student. Phase II is being developed in conjunction with the Royal Veterinary College and will examine how the rearing stage affects Productive Life. This will be a four year project, starting in 2013.

 

Ireland (Richard Tyrrell)

Numbers for Irish jerseys:
Active breeding males in herd book 96
Active breeding females in herd book. 1473
Estimated breed population in Ireland 3500
Males registered. 2011. 36
Females registered. 2011. 424
Active members ( breeders ) 56

There is a big use of jersey bulls/ semen in cross breeding, our national advisors claim that only NZ bloodlines are suitable for this, we do not agree. There is quite a bit of semen coming in from NZ as pedigree which, by our rules is not, so offspring has to go into supplementary register. We are afraid that when, or if, cross breeding becomes less popular, that the jersey breed will be blamed for this.

Denmark (Anders Levring)

We are very close to have an agreement with USA and Canada on exchange of genomic data, to enable us to form a common reference group. We expect higher reliabilities and much better pedigree information in the proofs, as a result of closer cooperation in this field. Our aim is to invite all others to join, after getting some experience with this first step.

In Denmark we have tested the first 400 bulls with a 740K SNP set, and we are currently testing app 2000 cows with the 54K, to have the cow data enter our reference group.  The interest in genomic super samplers has now exceeded 20% of the bull semen sold.

Q Impuls died April 19th, at the age of 13½ years. Q Impuls has produced nearly 600.000 doses of semen, - the second highest number for a Jersey bull world wide. And Q Impuls still ranks in top 5-10, for daughter proven bulls, in leading Jersey populations world wide. Extraordinary results for an old bull and extraordinary contribution to the international Jersey breeding. Q Impuls died at Cogent Breeding’s facilities in England, as he has been housed there since 2004, to produce sexed semen,

Over the last 5 years Danish Jersey has experienced lots of interest and success:

-   Progress of 20.000 1st inseminations, 7.500 purebred cows, 50 cows per herd and 16 kg fat + protein per cow.

Today we have 68.800 purebred and yield recorded Jersey cows in Denmark. Average herd size is 165 cows, producing 6600 kg milk with 5.92% butterfat and 4.11% protein, per year.

Export of conventional semen increased to 1.35 times the domestic sales, last year, and the export of sexed semen doubled to 42.000 doses.

Export of live animal has increased again, after the financial crises. Last 6 months we have exported app. 2000 heifers to other European countries (Albania, Austria, England, France, Hungary, Ireland, Italy and Switzerland).

 

Germany (Hubertus Diers)

The total number of Jersey cows is approximately 4000. In 2011, the number of registered Jersey cows in VDJ, the German Jersey Association, was 1405. There are additional Jersey cows registered in different regional herd books who have mostly Holsteins, so the total number of registered Jersey cows is about 2000.

Average production of the registered cows in VDJ in 2011 was: 5937 kg   5,65%   335 kg   4,03%   239 kg

Number of inseminations with Jerseys was increasing in 2011, due to inseminations on Holstein cows. Percentage of inseminations with sexed semen was 19,5% (!). Most heavily used bulls were: From US Eclipes-P and Dallas-PP, and from Denmark DJ Hovborg, DJ May and Q Zik-Sexed.

Two interesting side stories:

In February of 2012, a Jersey cow won the Supreme Champion title at the Alsfeld, Hessen, show, one of the major dairy shows in Germany. First time a Jersey cow won such a major show.

On June 29, 2012, the Luxemburg Summer Classic Sale will be held in Ettelbruck, Luxemburg. It is one of the very best European Holstein Sales. For the first time, a Jersey heifer will be sold there. She is a special heifer being a polled DJ May daughter from an EX-91 Brendon cow. She will create a lot of attention because she is polled from a great dam.

 

France (Olivier Bulot)

The population keeps growing, we have close to 4300 pure jersey cows on milk record at the moment.  The growth in cow number is 11% more during 2011 (highest rate of all breeds).

The production average figures of 2011 are as follows :

320 days 5106 kg with 5.57 fat and 4.06 protein (total protein)

Mature equivalent : 6074 kg with 5.57 F and 4.06 P

The demand for animals is very good. The functional traits and the high milk price are the keys to develop the breed here. In the future, the lower environmental impact (very interesting American study on this) with play an important role too we think. It is linked with feed efficiency. We communicate always more and more on this great asset of the breed.

The use of sexed semen is about 15% of total inseminations, it could be more to have more available animals for sale. The start of using genomic young sires in 2011 was good, about 9% of total inseminations.

 

Hungary

Two new Jersey herds are being established in Hungary right now. One is currently milking 500 Jerseys in new facilities, close to the Austrian boarder. The other farm (in the south eastern part of the Country) is milking 150 and aiming for 600 cows within the next year. This farm is planning to build a dairy factory,  for Jersey milk solely. The two herds have been importing 965 heifers from Denmark, over the last 6 months. 


Albania (Andrea Trajani)

Country / Organization

 

Albania

 

Union of Jersey Farmers “ALDA

First import of pure bred Jerseys

 

-First import 1927 supported from USA 2 bulls and 6 cows for a professional school. 

-In 1947 second importation 25 bulls and 405 cows. Center of Jersey Xhafzotaj-Durres. During the period 1970-1980 little importation from Denmark for state centers in Shkodra, Tirana and Elbasani.

After 1990 those centers do not exist.

 

Year of formation of

association

 

12/03/2007

 

Size of Jersey population, latest figures

(registered and total) for 2011 year

 

Total cows 354,000   100%

From them Jersey cattle and its crosses 109,457

Crosses  86,485 or 24.4% of total cows

Pour  breed    22,972 or      6.48 %  “ “

 

Regis rated jersey cows  2, 500

% of the national dairy cattle population

 

Average herd size

Jersey cattle (pure and crossbreed) has  30.9 %  of total cows population in Albania

 

2-3 heads

Average production

Kg milk, fat and protein – 305 days

 

M = 3567    F = 209     P =129.5

 

Breeding program with bull testing, yes/no

 

And number of bulls tested per annum

 

No

 

 

No

Distribution of Frozen semen (all imported) year 2011

Total  annual distribution 236,516 doses    100%

 

From them Jersey  21, 373 doses  9.1%

General management in your country

(Feeding, stalling, a. o.)

 

 

 

 

% of organic herds

 

 

Use of sexed semen

 

Most of cows are kept in small farms, 1-3 cows per family. Some bigger farms have 15-20 cows.

A combined system grazing and indoors is used. Hey pasture alfalfa and few amount of grain produced in farm are the main source of feed for cows.

Artificial insemination with frozen semen is used for 55% of jersey cows.

 

 

No

Events

WJCB meeting in Albania was a good support for jersey farmers.

Jersey cattle show organized in Xibraka, Elbasani as well as visit in Shkodra was good chance for Albanian jersey farmers to discuss with colleagues around the world.

 

Jersey farmers are making efforts to be involved in a breeding program for jersey cattle.

 

Respectfully submitted

Anders Levring, WJCB Vice President, Europe


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