Cambridge dairy farmer and breeder Brad Payne would herd test ten times a year, but he works as an LIC AB Technician during October so reluctantly sacrifices data he’d get during that month of the year.
The cooperative chartered a plane this month through Mainland Air to airfreight over 70,000 straws of semen (its biggest inter-island shipment) from Hamilton to Nelson, Christchurch, Invercargill and Dunedin.
The shipment is just one of many LIC will be making as its team works to impregnate four million cows over the coming months.
The 12cm long straws were stored in secure chilly bins as cargo during the flight with care and speed of delivery critical to maintaining the semen’s integrity.
LIC says for the first time it has chartered a plane for its semen delivery to the South Island, ensuring there is no interruption to its supply chain during the pandemic.
It also supports other traditional air and land transport options the cooperative is currently using to transport fresh semen quickly.
LIC’s general manager NZ Markets, Malcolm Ellis, says the shipment marks an exciting milestone as it’s the biggest individual consignment to date to the South Island by LIC.
“We’re seeing strong demand across our AB product options this year. Our delivery of fresh semen via our powerful Premier Sires teams continues to be a defining contributor of genetic merit to the national herd.
“This year we are particularly experiencing phenomenal growth in the area of fresh sexed semen which delivers a 90% chance of producing a heifer calf enabling farmers to target valuable heifer replacements from their most productive cows ensuring the rate of genetic gain within their dairy herds is optimised.”
It’s exciting to see the scale of this delivery taking place and ensuring the continuation of our incredible national dairy herd supported by committed and passionate farmers.”
Caption: LIC fresh liquid bull semen straws being prepared for shipment to the South Island.