CONSUMER expectations, research into seaweed slashing methane emissions and how Fixed Time Artificial Insemination (FTAI) is delivering profitable results to producers were among the key insights shared at the three-day 2022 ABS Conference and Progeny Tour.
More than 180 delegates from across the beef industry descended on Tamworth for the mid-March event to hear from a prominent lineup of Australian and global speakers. Herefords Australia was a proud sponsor of the conference which is held every two years.
As always, beef genetics were topical, with Meat and Livestock Australia’s (MLA) Hamish Chandler discussing the ability to adapt genetics for MSA-grade beef and improved eating quality, and provided insights into how producers can design their breeding programs to meet consumer expectations of sustainability and carbon neutrality. He also gave an update on the Northern Genomics Project, which may lead to standard estimated breeding values across breeds.
Influential cattle vet, Dr Enoch Bergman, shared an update on Fixed Time AI (FTAI) in commercial settings including new findings from MLA trials demonstrating FTAI’s effectiveness in delivering profitability to beef producers.
United States-based, Matthew Cleveland, Director of ABS Global Beef Product Development, presented an overview of ABS’s innovative NuEra Genetics program which optimises efficiencies in the supply chain for greater profitability, and the long-term sustainability of the industry.
Addressing the challenge of methane management in the beef and dairy industry, Future Feed’s Dr Breanna Roque offered an insightful presentation on research trials involving the introduction of Asparagopis seaweed to beef cattle diets, at a ratio of 0.2 per cent, to achieve an 80 per cent reduction in methane emissions. While the research is still in early stages, it’s showing positive results, and it will be important to monitor its progression.
The conference program also included a tour to third-generation Hereford breeder, Peakes Bowen Pastoral Poll Hereford and Angus Stud, where visitors witnessed first-class genetics in action. Females sired from stunning Poll Hereford bull and inaugural Super Sire, Wirruna Matty, were on display, before the stud held its March female sale, which saw 65 Poll Hereford heifers go under the hammer.
With COVID-19 travel and capacity restrictions now easing, the opportunity to gather face-to-face and meet with colleagues and peers was appreciated by all who attended. Herefords Australia is looking forward to representing and promoting the breed at future industry events in the coming year