Novel semen sexing technology boosts conception rates

Yorkshire dairy farmer, Tom Dodgson was the first farmer in Europe to  use Sexcel and is pictured with some of the calves FP1A8549
Yorkshire dairy farmer, Tom Dodgson was the first farmer in Europe to use Sexcel and is pictured with some of the calves FP1A8549

Trials of a novel technology for sexing cattle semen have resulted in a new and exciting product, Sexcel, launched by Genus ABS.

Sexcel is produced through an innovative technology for sexing cattle semen which does not subject the cells to the high pressures, electric currents and forces of the technology currently in use in the industry.

A one day old Sexcel calf.

A one day old Sexcel calf.

Commenting on the launch of the new technology, Ervin McKinstry, Ireland Manager for Genus ABS said: “We are very excited to bring this innovative 21st century technology to the market. Trial results validate that we have a new, exciting and very effective product to present to our customers, which will help them to achieve profit through genetic progress.”

One of the Northern Ireland farmers involved in the trials for Sexcel is Alastair Thompson who farms at Ballee Road, Strabane. His aims in the 600 cow herd are longevity, high production from forage, a compact cow that will breed back quickly and produce high yields.

Alistair started using sexed semen on the heifers in the herd three years ago and has been so impressed that he is considering using it on the cows as well. He has used Pesky, MVP, Foster, Applejax, Daredevil, Madal and Solaris.

He said: “Using conventional sexed semen has ensured that I have quality heifers coming into the herd and instead of low value Holstein bulls to sell I have quality Belgian Blue calves from the section of the herd that I am not breeding replacements from. But the icing on the cake has been the Sexcel trial whereby I not only enjoy these benefits but have also had an increase of 10% in conception rates.”

Alastair went on to say that the calves from Sexcel were born in August and are most impressive.

He added: “I have every confidence in Sexcel and am pleased that it is past the trial stage and is now on the market. The increased conception rates have meant that I have used less semen to get the same amount of pregnancies. Sexcel technology not only increases conception rates which means more cows in milk but also provides leading genetics for both beef and dairy. Add the bonus of a crop of really pleasing quality calves on the ground and you have a win/win situation! I look forward to using more Sexcel in the future.”