Genetics Australia today announced it has purchased the independently owned and operated artificial insemination company Genetic Enterprises at Cambridge in New Zealand’s north island.
Genetics Australia chief executive Anthony Shelly said it was the first time the co-operative had purchased an overseas business and the New Zealand market was important for Genetics Australia’s “overall export strategy”.
In a statement, Genetics Australia said the purchase of Genetic Enterprises meant New Zealand dairy farmers would continue to have access to a “wide-range of leading Australian dairy sires as well as a select group of genetics sourced from the northern hemisphere”.
Mr Shelly said bulls that have been most popular across the Tasman Sea include those “that offer a combination of medium stature, A2, high milk solids (and) outcross bloodlines”.
“The specific bulls include Medallion, with great conformation, excellent udder, A2 and Jersey sire Aussie Gold who offers great body traits, excellent udders and is also polled,” he said.
The purchase of Genetic Enterprises was finalised this month.
Genetic Enterprises service all of New Zealand “albeit their current footprint is relatively small, at Genetics Australia we see this as part of the opportunity to grow,” Mr Shelly said.
Genetics Australia chairman Trevor Henry said the co-operative was excited about investing in the New Zealand breeding industry.
“The purchase is part of our export strategy identified by the board to grow the co-operative and this opportunity came at just the right time for us. Australia has for many years been a net importer of genetics from many countries, including New Zealand and while we have been steadily growing our sales in New Zealand through Genetic Enterprises for the past three years this move gives us the chance to be a greater part of a large dairy industry very close to our shores,” he said.
“We are confident that with the emphasis we have placed in Australia for decades on breeding a moderate size cow with the will and functionality to milk for numerous lactations, our genetics can make a positive contribution to the national dairy herd in New Zealand. In Australia every decision we make is in the best interests of our shareholder members and we are committed to delivering the type of genetics New Zealand farmers demand into the future.”
Genetic Enterprises principal Allen Donald said the business was established 18 years ago after he saw a need for broader range of genetics to be made available to New Zealand producers.
Genetic Enterprises services dairy and beef clients as well as “a range of other species”, according to Mr Donald.
“We first introduced semen from Genetics Australia bulls a little over three years ago and the early reports on daughters of several of the bulls is most pleasing and demand had grown year-on-year,” he said.
“The Australian national breeding index, the BPI (balanced performance index) incorporates traits focused on producing a profitable dairy cow and was established based on both science and on what farmers wanted to see in a good dairy cow.”
Genetics Australia also sells semen to South Africa. It has been one of its strongest export markets for more than 10 years, according to Mr Shelly.
“The more recent growth has been in Latin American countries such as Chile, Costa Rica (and) Uruguay,” he said.
“China is also developing as nice market with strong interest in both dairy and beef genetics.”
Genetics Australia will also celebrate its 60th anniversary this year. It was first established as Victorian Artificial Breeders Cooperative in 1958.
By: SIMONE SMITH
Source: The Weekly Times