What’s The Most Important Innovation In Genetics?

Continuing with our look at the history of innovation in the U.S. beef industry, this week’s online poll question asks: “What was the most important innovation in genetics?”

Be sure to leave your thoughts in the comments section after voting.

Discuss this poll 12

on Jul 18, 2014

I agree with the first comments. None of these factors help me select high performing animals for grass and forbs. In fact, most are counter productive. It is very hard to find the kind of animals needed because of generations of grainfed dependence. Find a good producer and stick with them but it's getting harder because grassfed demand is growing 25% per year. kesehatan , kata kata lucu romantis
kata kata bijak cinta , kata kata cinta sejati , kata kata mutiara kehidupan , kata mutiara cinta romantis , , mutiara cinta romantis , lucu

Anonymous
on Aug 25, 2013

"Form Follows Function, the function of an animal is to reproduce in the Environment into which it is born." We as humans believe we know better than Nature and have selected for the wrong traits.There are so many traits that only Nature can select for all of them and produce a rounded animal , which will produce, in the Environment into which it is born.
If we do not select this approach we will continually have to give costly inputs (change the Environment) to suite the animal! Ian Mitchell-Innes

Anonymous
on Aug 20, 2013

though AI revolutionized animal reproduction,genetic selection lagged behind.Pedigree selection,modestly contributed to genetic improvement.Genomics will revolutionize selection of better germ plasm than pedigree selection

Anonymous
on Aug 20, 2013

I agree with the first comments. None of these factors help me select high performing animals for grass and forbs. In fact, most are counter productive. It is very hard to find the kind of animals needed because of generations of grainfed dependence. Find a good producer and stick with them but it's getting harder because grassfed demand is growing 25% per year.

Anonymous
on Aug 20, 2013

what would A.I. be without EPD's? An expensive guessing game.

Anonymous
on Aug 20, 2013

We're seedstock and grassfed beef producers. Have used AI and collected individual performance data on every weanling and many yearlings in our herd since the 1970s, employed embryo transfer in the 1990s, took EPDs into consideration since their inception. Did crossbreeding during the 80s and 90s on a portion of the herd but sold all the resulting calves in disappointment after a decade. We used ultrasound for carcass evaluation from time to time, which verified the superior consistency of our breed. Had all our herd bulls genomically evaluated last year. We wouldn't use fetal programming or cloning if someone paid us to do it. No one knows enough information or has sufficient good judgment to play God like that. We are often disappointed in the A.I. bulls available these days because their progeny can't make it on grass in our environment. All have been selected for generations using their ability to adapt to grain in the feedlot, not to our local climate and forage challenges. So we tend to select homebred bulls from highly successful grass-bred cow families that go back many generations here. If we could locate buyers for the calves to help offset the cost, we would still use embryo transfer to propagate those good old fertile, functional cows that have done everything right, but the folks with the money are after the next big showring sensation. We have to say that consistently weighing and recording the performance of every calf, observing how well they function in our environment on our grass under our management and then using the most successful, sound, fertile and disease-resistant individuals to breed the next generation is still our best bet. To expand our genetic base, we have bought a couple of bulls from equally demanding environments. Maybe we can hold out long enough for the rest of the beef seedstock industry to understand the importance of doing ability on grass again.

Anonymous
on Aug 19, 2013

To me the answer isn't listed above. Commonsense is often forgotten when breeding cattle. To many times breeders forget about the fundamentals and end up chasing to many things which in turn hurts the animal one way or another. For example, AI can be a good thing or it can be a bad thing. If you use the wrong bull because you left your commonsense at the door, you can have an entire heifer crop lost due to soundness, fertility, udder quality or flesh ability.

Anonymous
on Aug 19, 2013

I give my answer on my blog A Steak in Genomics. I argue it is important to realize how AI and EPDs worked together.

Jared Decker

Anonymous
on Aug 16, 2013

The operative word here in this question is - "WAS". All phases of cattle breeding and reproduction are critical, but nothing "WAS" more important, at the time, than the inovation of EPD's. Everything else of reproductive importance followed after the UNDERSTANDING of EPD's and their genetic importance.

DOC HARRIS

Anonymous
on Aug 16, 2013

So EPD's are more important than something like crossbreeding?
Wouldn't have Brahmans, Santas, and many other breeds without crossbreeding, and you forget that they did it all without EPD's.

Anonymous
on Aug 16, 2013

I have been involved in one capacity or the other in AI for well over fifty years, and it was then and has got to be now, the most progressive and genetically valuable tool available to the cattleman today.

on Aug 16, 2013

As we are discovering more genetic defects, being able to test for these problems and select breeding animals based on that information will save a great deal of disappointment and allow for greater progress.

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