‘Team Oz’ for world expo

Jersey Australia general manager Glen Barrett says the trade mission is a great opportunity to showcase Australian genetics at the world’s largest dairy cow and trade show.

Australia’s leading dairy breed associations and genetics companies are joining forces for the first time to host a trade site at World Dairy Expo in the United States.

The joint site is an initiative of Jersey Australia and will include Holstein Australia, Genetics Australia, AgriGene and Central Sires Co-op with support from National Herd Improvement Association of Australia.

World Dairy Expo will be in Madison, Wisconsin from October 2 to 7.

Jersey Australia general manager Glen Barrett said the trade mission was a great opportunity to take a “team Australia” approach to showcase Australian genetics at the world’s largest dairy cow and trade show.

“We’re seeing significant growth in Australian Jerseys genetics in North America with a large number of bulls now available,” Mr Barrett said.

“We see our involvement in the trade show as a way to grow that market share for Australian Jerseys.”

Mr Barrett said the involvement with Holstein Australia and the genetics companies was part of Jersey Australia’s strategic relationship to grow Australian genetics across the world.

“Companies have been involved at World Dairy Expo on their own but this is the first time we’ve had a total focus on Australian genetics all together on one trade site,” he said.

Genetics Australia export manager Rob Derksen said it was a good time to capitalise on growing demand in North America for Australian genetics.

“We’ve appointed a distributor for some of our bulls and we’re currently putting together our first shipment of Jersey genetics to the US for a number of years,” Mr Derksen said.

“Australia is recognised as having some of the best Jersey genetics in the world, and many Americans and Canadians are now recognising Australia has developed some top genetics from some of Australia’s leading cow families.”

In the past six months, Genetics Australia — which has participated in previous World Dairy Expos — has sent Jersey semen to Canada for the first time.

Central Sires Co-operative has recently exported its first batch of semen to the US.

Chairman Peter Ness said Americans had been looking elsewhere to broaden their genetic base.

“We haven’t been involved previously with World Dairy Expo, but now is the time to have a go,” Mr Ness said.

“We’ve got some good bulls on our list and I know there is interest. Australia hosted the World Jersey annual meeting about eight years ago and that opened a lot of the delegates’ eyes to the quality of our Jersey cattle.”

Agri-Gene general manager Chris McIllroy will be a first-time exhibitor at the expo on the back of recent sales of Australian Jersey semen in the US.

“It’s good that everyone is getting together to promote Australian genetics,” he said.

“Globally, people know New Zealand for having good grazing genetics, but they don’t really know Australian. This is a good opportunity for Australian companies to work together to put our name out there.”

NHIA is funding the trade site, and CEO Sara Merckel said the NHIA board was very supportive of the concept.

“NHIA saw it as a great opportunity to promote Australian genetics and support the industry as a whole to expand exports,” Ms Merckel said.

Holstein Australia will look for new markets for live heifer exports during its first display at World Dairy Expo.

CEO Rohan Butler said it was a great opportunity to work as a team to promote the benefits of Australian livestock.

“We’re the clean, green supplier of live Holstein heifers to China and other countries and want to take the opportunity to promote that as far and wide as we can,” Mr Butler said.

“About 100,000 heifers go to China every year and we’re keen to see that number grow and to also grow the number of markets.

“We’ve had discussions with Pakistan and there are other South-East Asian countries that will be potential buyers that will be at the expo.”