Sire Verified Aberdeen-Angus
The Sire Verified Aberdeen-Angus Scheme is an initiative promoting the DNA testing of all Aberdeen-Angus cattle, in order to prove they belong to the World’s premier breed. This has been a major focus of 2017 and will continue in the coming years, and the Society has been working to provide members with an affordable, cost effective and voluntary method to expand their DNA testing.
This will not only uphold the reputation of the Aberdeen-Angus brand and breed as a leader in the industry, but simultaneously better equips breeders and members to market their own personal brand, and appeal to a wider audience by being verified Angus. Ultimately Sire Verified Angus allows our members to uphold the credibility of their herds, their pedigrees, and in turn the Society’s herd book.
Sire Verified Aberdeen-Angus: Policy and Process
The Society is very proud of both the breed, and the integrity of its herd book. This pride is rooted in the careful approach we take in verifying the Aberdeen-Angus name, in all activity and operations. As such, our goals for the Aberdeen-Angus Sire Verification Scheme are to:
- Protect the integrity of the herd book.
- Strengthen the Aberdeen-Angus position as the leading breed.
- Make breeding Aberdeen-Angus more profitable for our members.
- Improve quality by testing for genetic defects.
- Provide traceability of beef to satisfy market expectation.
- Increase value of testing services offered to members.
The scheme is completely voluntary. Members and breeders have the option to submit lists of bulls that they have sold for commercial or pedigree use, to our registration department, who will facilitate testing of DNA samples. For calves, testing can be requested at the registration/intimation stage. However, to encourage testing entire herds, and to help achieve our goals for the breed, the Society has introduced the following policies for Sire Verification:
- All calves born in 2017 or later are now eligible for sire verification and myostatin testing at a reduced cost of £15 per head.
- All 2015 and 2016 born bull calves sold into commercial use for breeding are eligible for sire verification and myostatin testing at the society’s expense.
- From the 1st September 2018, testing at Society sales will no longer be provided free of charge.
- It will remain a requirement that all bulls and led females entering Society sales are to be tested for sire verification and myostatin levels.
- We have established a new genomic option and genetic defect facility with our partners, which members can utilise should they wish.
Benefits of Sire Verification
Due to growing demand from consumers, retailers and restaurants now require traceability of food to be more transparent and accurate than ever. This is something the Society whole-heartedly agrees with, and is working towards through the Sire Verified Angus scheme.
While voluntary for most cattle, there are several benefits that make registering a positive move for your herd; both economically and practically:
- Quality Mark: Enrolling in a voluntary scheme to authenticate your animals as Aberdeen-Angus, shows the market that proof of quality is something you take seriously. It provides a mark of quality for your personal herd, and maintains the integrity of the overall Aberdeen-Angus herd book you are a part of.
- Increased Sales Quantity: There is a growing market demand for traceability of food. Quality marks such as ‘Sire Verified Angus’ are becoming very influential in the decision making of buyers. This includes retailers, restaurants, and end consumers.
- Higher Sale Price: Sire verification reduces the chance for unauthentic bulls to be sold under the Aberdeen-Angus name. This protects our integrity and increases the value of our breed. By marketing sire verified commercial bulls, you make it clear that your animals are genuine Aberdeen-Angus, and can increase the price fetched compared to non-verified bulls.
- Improved Breeding: Certainty over parentage allows more accurate tracking of genetic traits. Joining can be better planned to maximise the opportunity for positive traits and eliminate negatives, with a genetic defects facility available to breeders.
- Better Value: The Society is working with testing partners and existing genomic providers, to deliver robust DNA and myostatin testing, at the best price Making it reliable and affordable for all society members.
- Consumer Satisfaction: By encouraging the adoption of sire verification testing at abattoirs, and the sale of verified commercial bulls, we can maintain our cattle’s leading reputation as the number one breed. With all beef labelled as Aberdeen-Angus having been fully verified, we can ensure consumers are never given substandard beef under our name.
- Eliminating Error: Studies have shown that even for breeders following best practice errors can be made. This can lead to calves being undervalued and DNA testing eliminates these types of issue.
Further information about the Aberdeen-Angus Sire Verification Scheme, as well as the necessary application and registration forms will soon be available via the Society website. In the meantime, please feel free to contact the Society directly for more detail.