Herefords on the increase

Hereford crosses are making good prices in the marts with a keen demand for both drop calves and store cattle.
Hereford crosses are making good prices in the marts with a keen demand for both drop calves and store cattle.

The number of Hereford sired calves born across the UK has increased dramatically in the last year, producing the highest percentage increase of any beef breed.

This is particularly significant in Northern Ireland with the Animal and Public Health Information System (APHIS) recording an increase of 34.2% for Hereford sired calf registrations in 2015.

The number of Hereford sired calves born in the UK (BCMS and APHIS) has increased for seven consecutive years, increasing by a massive 61%, with the total number of Hereford sired calves registered in 2015 standing in excess of 150,000.

David Deakin, from The Hereford Cattle Society, commenting on the figures stated: “Over the past 10 years the Society has seen a year on year increase in membership, pedigree registrations, transfers and cattle valuations – but it’s equally important to see an expansion in popularity of the Hereford sire in the commercial sector. Whilst the society’s core business will always be to service its membership, improve and promote the pedigree Hereford, a greater demand for commercial Herefords whether it’s as a terminal sire or a moderate sized functional suckler cow, this can only create further demand for the registered Hereford sire.”

Mr Deakin added: “The Hereford breed seems well placed to provide livestock farmers with cattle that are cost effective to rear, due to their ease of management and low production costs.

“Farmers using Hereford genetics are also able to produce the type of carcase meat processors and major retailers require – well marbled, reared on a forage-based diet and with a finished weight between 320-350kg.”