Welcome to the World Jersey Cattle Bureau
The Jersey breed’s global view was strengthened by the World Jersey Cattle Bureau 18th Conference held in the Jersey Island on May 2008, the pre and post tours to England and France respectively, farms’ visits, cattle shows and the outstanding World Jersey Cheese Festival.
During the meeting, one of the main assets was the opportunity to share experiences among breeders from the various regions around the world, either directly or by means of presentations during the conference. All this exchange gave us a deeper knowledge on the development of milk production, as the state of the art huge operation in Dalhart, Texas, or in small farms, such as the one presented by the young breeder Ruben Dario Galvis from Colombia, or the breed’s development programs in Rwanda, by Dr. Theogene Rutagwenda. All of them showed us different scenarios to which we wouldn’t have access if we hadn’t attended the meeting. We are deeply grateful with each and all of the organizers and speakers for the success achieved in the event.
Having been elected president of the Bureau for the period 2008-2011 is the greatest honor I have ever received, and the biggest commitment, taking into consideration the calibre of the previous Presidents. I have also assumed a great responsibility with each of you: directors, member associations, Jersey breeders and particularly the breed; to which I have dedicated a big part of my personal and professional life.
The Bureau’s main objective must be to promote the union and participation of a larger number of young people in the different areas of our activities. I consider essential to make special emphasis on programs such as the JETA and the Youth Travel Scholarship and also to follow the example of programs like the Jersey Youth Academy developed by the American Jersey Cattle Association, whose successful results can guide us towards new strategies to catch the attention of young generations.
Notwithstanding the global economic crisis, the Jersey breed associations around the world reported many important goals achieved last year regarding registration records, milk production levels, a big growth in semen doses sold and a considerable increase in the number of breeders who are using Jersey genetics in many dairy crossbreds. Johannes Van Eeden pointed out that there is a special interest in the breed in the African Continent due to a great influence from the South African association. We can conclude then that the Jersey breed is the ideal breed to face adversity: besides its productive and reproductive efficiency, it is an ally against environmental deterioration. In spite of these positive aspects, we have to be conscious that a lot of hard work is needed in order to create strong marketing strategies oriented to spread the breed’s advantages to different regions on the world.
We must recognize that the web site is a valuable and irreplaceable tool for us to achieve our main goal: communication. Through the internet we can express our opinion and report the activities carried out by this organisation. Hence, it is imperative that we update the site permanently in order to be able to answer the inquiries from those who visit the website. We should consider the possibility to create a blog: a dynamic tool that allows people to share experiences of any matter, such as production, management, nutrition, weather, etc. Other creative ideas we can take into account for the breed’s promotion are: to encourage participation in virtual conferences, cattle shows real-time online videos and generally, the latest technologies available.
For all these programs we need sponsors. We must plan marketing strategies to attract them and therefore we need someone to manage advertising and further activities related to the web.
Regarding the President’s International agenda, in October 2008 I had the opportunity to attend the World Dairy Expo in Madison and the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair in Toronto in November 2008. I was not able to attend the 15th Anniversary of the Mexican Jersey Association last December; however, Agustin Robredo acted on behalf of the Bureau in the event and made a presentation. Likewise, the Association of Guatemala celebrated its 25th Anniversary, and the Bureau sent regards to directors and members.
Not everything has been good, the end of the year brought a deterioration of the milk price; many countries report a price drop of various levels, both in milk as in dairy products. This fact has affected the normal development of the dairy business in a numerous regions around the world.
Some countries have faced adverse governmental policies applied, also environmental conditions. For example, the long period of dry weather in Argentina or the widespread fires in Australia which have harmed cattle producers and Jersey breeders in particular. We express our solidarity to them.