The Victorian Government has launched a five-year, $55 million research partnership between industry and government that seeks to address key issues facing dairy farmers, such as how to breed more productive cows that produce fewer emissions.
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The initiative, called DairyBio21-26, will partner the Victorian Government with Dairy Australia and the Gardiner Dairy Foundation to support scientific research focused on genetic improvements to animals and forage species.

“DairyBio21-26 continues the focus on two of the major drivers of industry success — improving the herd and improving pastures. New inventions matched with real industry needs and support from across government and commercial sector are what excite us at Dairy Australia,” said Dairy Australia Chairman James Mann.

The long-term vision is to provide farmers with the tools and information they need to breed and feed cows that produce more milk, healthier calves and less methane under a changing climate.

As a result of climate change and other regulatory and trade changes, forecasts suggest that dairy farmers will need to increase their productivity by 1.5% per year to maintain profitability.

“DairyBio21-26 will support our world-leading scientists to meet the challenges facing our dairy industry head-on and to deliver practical solutions to our dairy farmers as they adjust to operating under a changing climate,” said Minister for Agriculture Mary-Anne Thomas.

The initiative will support scientists to meet this challenge, targeting an additional value of $200 per cow each year for Australian dairy herds by 2040. This will be achieved through genetic improvements that will result in cows that live longer and produce fewer emissions — with the flow-on benefits of reduced costs.

The Bumblebee Conservation Trust has teamed up with Calon Wen, and wants other dairy farms to join in.

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