SUSSEX CATTLE SOCIETY
A new initiative to celebrate 50 Years of performance recording
Between 1968 and 1971 over 500 Sussex calves were recorded as part of the early weight recording programmes developed by the newly created Meat and Livestock Commission.
50 years later and with Signet Breeding Services at the helm, we now use the latest statistical methods to assess our breeding stock, including the ability to assess the maternal performance of the cow for traits like ease of calving, milk production and longevity.
Yet, at the core of Signet’s recording services remains the need to obtain regular updates of high quality data from breeders across the country.
In 2020 Signet relaunched its Beefbreeder service to provide online data entry to clients and the ability to access breeding values, reports and stationery at the click of a button.
Sussex Cattle Society initiative
First to take advantage of these new services has been the Sussex Cattle Society, who have decided to offer its members free access to all of Signet’s services from 2021.
As part of a new initiative with Signet, the Sussex Cattle Society will fund the recording costs of any Society member that has paid their capitation fees; effectively removing the financial barrier that may have previously limited smaller herds from engaging in weight recording.
From 2021, data collection services for Sussex cattle will move entirely online. Extra data has been provided by the Society to support this work – including the provision of pedigree records for 1,500 stock bulls to strengthen the genetic evaluations and enhance Signet’s cutting edge, inbreeding software.
Amongst the new services provided, breeders are being encouraged to weigh their cows at weaning time as the recording programme shines a spotlight on the efficiency of the Sussex as a suckler cow designed to thrive on low input forage.
To help with the marketing of bulls, breeders can generate charts and family trees online as before, but now they can also list cattle and semen that they have for sale and produce data in a catalogue format to interest prospective bull buyers.
A promising start
Breed Secretary Society, Sue Kennedy says “We have had a massive interest in recent weeks, with more than a dozen new herds already showing interest in recording and a record turnout at Signet’s online meetings. It isn’t just the small herds that are showing interest either, with many larger herds already capturing the data we need within the farm software programmes”
James Holdstock, Society President, says “I am really pleased that our breeders are taking this opportunity to move their herds forward. I have been informed that nearly 6,000 of the Sussex cattle that are included in Signet’s analysis including many dating back to the 1960’s come from our Elbridge Herd. As one of the earliest herds to start recording we have gained a real insight into our herd genetics and make use of the data to improve herd performance. This is a great opportunity and I would encourage Sussex breeders to get involved.”
For more information about the Sussex recording programme and to view Estimated Breeding Values for Sussex cattle go to www.signetdata.com Video clips explaining how breeders can use the service can be accessed here https://www.signetdata.com/technical/herdbook-
For further information contact :
Sue Kennedy at firstname.lastname@example.org
Samuel Boon at email@example.com
Starting 2021 The Sussex Cattle Society will be funding Sussex Breeders, breeders will have their Signet Beefbreeder fees paid by the Society.