Beef farmers demand action on data cheats
Societies claim ICBF is to blame for delay in roll-out of programme to tackle falsification of records
Beef farmers have called on the Irish Cattle Breeding Society (ICBF) to speed up the roll-out of measures to tackle the falsification of key breeding data.
The falsification of data is costing beef farmers up to €10m a year, industry sources have claimed.
ICBF data has revealed that over half of cesareans performed on pedigree beef cows are not recorded, while cross-fostering with dairy cows, inaccurate birth dates and a host of other malpractices were common on pedigree beef farms as breeders sought to maximise the sale value of their breeding bulls.
As many as one in 10 pedigree bulls, averaging close to €3,000 each, never even produce a calf.
However, the big three breed societies - Charolais, Limousin and Simmental - are claiming that it is ICBF's fault that a programme to stamp out deception in the sector has not got off the ground.
"ICBF need, to do more work on additional data collection on birth weights and AI records," said the Simmental Society secretary Peadar Glennon.
"Only 40pc of inseminations are being recorded on handheld devices by technicians, despite a commitment from ICBF 10 years ago on this."
While the breeding boss claimed that breed societies were anxious that "something" should happen in relation to the issues highlighted by the ICBF data, he insisted that breeders were being unfairly singled out.