Genomics has become a hot topic of discussion on today’s dairy farms as producers look for innovative solutions to maximize performance and improve profitability in their herds.

In the April 2013 issue of Starting Strong, a calf-care e-newsletter from Vita Plus, Cheryl Marti, dairy production specialist with Zoetis, says genomics can be worth the investment on well-managed farms. She said Zoetis views genetic improvement as an important part of a comprehensive management program involving health, milk quality, reproduction and nutrition that together can create a sustainable dairy business plan. Ultimately, genetics and genomics are permanent and additive ways to improve many aspects of performance with the end goal of raising healthy, more profitable replacements.

Marti said dairies use genomic testing in one of two ways: as a replacement inventory management tool or to improve the genetic potential of the next generation. Regardless of the strategy, Marti said producers must clearly define their goals and keep good records to make the most of genomic testing.

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Source: Vita Plus Starting Strong Calf Care E-news, April 2013