Alta Genetics and Monsanto Company have entered an agreement for Alta to market Decisive™ semen for Advanced Gender Selection.  Decisive™ has been developed to give producers the option of selecting for heifer calves with high-quality genetics, while achieving overall reproductive performance that is as effective as their current AI results.

“Through this agreement, Alta will offer dairy producers another valuable tool to manage the reproductive performance and genetic quality of their herd,” says Cees Hartmans, Alta’s chief executive officer. “Decisive™ will allow dairy producers to accelerate their genetic progress through increased selection intensity, while Alta’s exclusive Advantage™ program increases the accuracy of sire proofs.  Together, our two firms will offer progressive dairies Decisive™ semen with the Alta Advantage™.”

Through the Advantage™ program, Alta has partnered with 170 large, progressive dairies across the US to test the genetic merit of sires by evaluating their daughters’ performance under intensely managed conditions. The level of partnership with these dairies creates an unmatched source of accurate sire proof information–all daughters of Advantage™ marketed sires have been DNA tested to ensure proper identification–as well as data on health and management traits that affect dairy farm profitability.

Decisive™ semen for Advanced Gender Selection results from a process that will sort high genetic merit semen collected by Alta.  The process identifies and selects sperm cells with the desired X chromosome, resulting in a product capable of producing predominantly female offspring.

Today’s announcement paves the way for validation testing to be conducted to collect additional data on Decisive™ performance before it is made available commercially.  Testing will be conducted in selected Alta Advantage™ herds.  Data will be collected to confirm that Decisive™ is easy to use, provides consistent results, and contributes to overall reproductive performance.

“The validation study will meet the high standards that Alta sets to offer dairymen valuable products in which they can have confidence,” Hartmans states.  “The results from Alta Advantage™ herds are immediately relevant to progressive dairies.”

Alta will begin field-testing Decisive™ semen for Advanced Gender Selection in the first half of 2007.  Alta anticipates Decisive™ semen collected from genetically superior Alta sires will be available after successful completion of the field testing.

For more information on Decisive™ semen with the Alta Advantage™, see www.altagenetics.com

Alta Genetics